Have you ever been overcome by a case of “Costco-sis”, a bulk buying phenomenon that strikes when you least expect it?
This recently happened to me while on what was to be a quick run into Costco for a few items. I managed to exercise restraint when it came to the 10 pound bag of quinoa I came across, and even passed on the 3-pack of Himalayan salt (that was a tough one). But when I spotted the Meyer lemons (at Costco!), I couldn’t resist. When do you ever see Meyer lemons at Costco? So into my cart went 4 pounds of Meyer lemons, and into my mind came all of the wonderful things I could make with the Meyer lemons.
First up would be Meyer Lemon Dust. Dehydrating other citrus fruits and grinding into a fine powder worked, so why not Meyer lemons? The process is actually really easy, and the results are amazing!
Here’s what you do, step- by- step:
1. Use a knife or a mandeline to slice the Meyer lemons into wafer thin slices and spread out on a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer. (I used 4 Meyer lemons.)
2. Bake them in a 275 degree oven for 3 hours, or until the lemons have darkened in color and are dehydrated.
3. Add 1/4 teaspoon sea salt and 1/2 teaspoon of sugar to the dehydrated slices. Use a spice grinder or coffee bean grinder (coffee bean residue removed of course) and working in batches, grind slices/sugar/salt mixture into a powdery dust.
The result? An intense concentration of Meyer lemon flavor packed into powdery crystals. I eneded up with about 1/2 cup of dust from the 4 Meyer lemons I dehydrated. I have been experimenting with all kinds of things using this Meyer Lemon Dust, and will share my results as I go along.
My first creation was Pan Seared Scallops with Meyer Lemon Dust and Chipotle Beurre Blanc. I added the Meyer Lemon Dust after the scallops were seared so that the dust wouldn’t scortch and become bitter. The chipotle beurre blanc offered just the right amount of heat, and a nice combination with the hints of orange you get with a Meyer lemon.
Pan Seared Scallops with Meyer Lemon Dust and Chipotle Beurre Blanc
For tips on pan searing scallops, please refer to my post How to Perfectly Pan Sear Scallops
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
2 teaspoons Meyer lemon zest
1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
3 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice
1/4 cup dry white wine
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces and kept cold
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon canola oil
16 dry- pack sea scallops
2 teaspoons Meyer Lemon Dust
Prepare the Beurre Blanc:
Place the shallots, zest, chile powder, juice, and wine in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until liquid is reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Whisk in the cold butter, one tablspoon at a time, adding the next piece just as the previous one has melted. If the sauce gets too hot, remove it from the heat so that it does not separate; season with salt and pepper and keep warm over very low heat while you sear the scallops.
Pat scallops dry with a paper towel and season both sides with salt. Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add the scallops. Cook 3-4 minutes on the first side; until bottom has a nice golden crust established. Flip and cook and additional 3-4 minutes on second side. Pool 1 1/2 tablespoons of the Beurre Blanc onto each of the serving plates and top with scallops. Sprinkle each of the scallops with a pinch of Meyer Lemon Dust (see recipe above)and serve.
4 entree servings
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