Tuesday, May 21, 2013

When life gives you lemons...

'Lemon Tree' painted by Yael Berger @ Etsy




Under the lemon tree...

When life gives you lemons... I say, embrace them
Lemons have been tricky to find in Saigon, you often ask for a lemon and often get a lime instead. I love limes so I can not complain but sometimes only a lemon will do. Citrus fragrance notes resonate with me...give me an earthy, woodsy, 'citrusy', clear, fresh fragrance note and I will swoon. How many of you love the smell of freshly cut grass..a field of it? If you do..you know what I am talking about...but let's not get carried away..because today I want to talk about lemons.

When life gives you lemons...drink them
My sister started me thinking about lemons..she suggested lemons to flush out toxins, enhance skin and reduce bloating. Who can say no to that? She boils up a pitcher of water, throws in slices of a whole lemon, lets it cool and sips away throughout the day. There are plenty of health benefits to drinking warm water and lemon too, you can read healthy lemon tips here.


via Mind Body Green

If you prefer the sweeter variety...make lemonade. I prefer the fresh variety with a few sprigs of mint but if you are after the sweet, why not try Ina Garten's pink lemonade?


When life gives you lemons... eat them
I am not sure if I ever mentioned that I have a sweet tooth..and a nose to seek out the finest lemon scented/flavoured sweets. There is nothing I love more than rich lemon bars, tangy lemon tartlettes,  a  moist lemon cake and that nice hot drizzle over Lisa's luscious lemon loaf. I am telling you now...that I can type this without regret as I am about to take off to the gym..where surely I will be thinking of lemons.

Kitchen art 'Lemon Meringue Pie' @ Etsy






When life gives you lemons...bring out the veggies
The lovely thing about lemons...is that they create so many wonderful taste sensations. I love them on veggies..especially grilled asparagus with a touch of lemon oil. Take fresh asparagus, drizzle a little olive oil over them, add one or two slices of lemon and toss the on the grill..a Henriques family favourite. Lemon and fish..a winner. Black olives, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, fresh herbs and a dash of olive oil and tug of lemon...sigh..delicious. Even better, a simple and healthy Pasta with Fresh Herbs and Peas with lemon zest. Who can pass up a healthy alternative, especially after thinking about all those rich desserts? How about you? What do you create when life gives you lemons?



Pasta with Fresh Herbs and Peas

When life gives you lemons...breathe them in.
I mentioned fragrance notes..of a earthy citrus variety. There are a few that never leave my dressing table and I have Jo Malone to thank for that. I adore Orange Blossom and Grapefruit..especially when the sun shines and heavy, heady tropical air hangs about. These two fragrances are like a call to attention..they lift me up and get me going. To that I add French Lime Blossom and Lime Basil Mandarin...they suit Saigon weather perfectly.


Jo Malone Grapefruit collection

and there you have it...
when LIFE gives you lemons..
I say.. 
embrace them, 
drink them, 
eat them 
and breathe them in
and if you are feeling particularly creative
paint them too!


Jacob van Hulsdonck 
Still Life with Lemons, Oranges and a Pomegranate
c.1640


A lemon link recap...

Recipes abound.. 

Jo Malone Fragrances..
Prints and Paintings...

It seems only fitting that I should end 
with a reading selection for you...




Lemon Book Love..

For you..
BTW...the movie version 'Lemon Tree' is fabulous! You can view the trailer here.

for children..

for cooking...
where lemon is quintessential to great food

When life gives you lemons...
SMILE!

50 comments:

  1. Hello Jeanne

    Loved this post! I am crazy for lemons--the smell and color has a way of making me happy.

    Have a great day!

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  2. Happy to know another is sharing the love Tracy!! :)

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  3. I'm a lemon lover too Jeanne... :)
    I shall be going through you lists later to enjoy all that is citrusy... xv

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    1. I hope you find something you like Vicki... :)

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  4. I LOVE lemons and always have a bowl of them in the kitchen...I like your sister drink hot water and lemon as you say it's very good for cleansing the skin and Lemon Tart is my absolute favourite ;-)
    I'm going to pop across to Amazon and check out the books here...I enjoyed Aimee Bender's novel.
    Have a lovely lemony (if that's a word!) day Jeanne.
    Catherine xx

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  5. bonjour jeanne...as i write i just sprayed my last drop of Jo Malone's Lime Basil Mandarin..which i've loved for years. i too am a lemon lover. my fridge always has a pitcher of water with lemons. there is a lemon floating in my afternoon tea...a squirt on my fish for dinner..and the left over wedge in my vodka soda. :)
    i love lemon tarts and bars! a big bowl of lemons on the kitchen counter makes me happy!
    i'm going to amazon to take a look at that cookbook..merci!
    xo

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    1. Pam..I am thrilled! I am also thinking about a big bowl of lemons on your kitchen counter in Paris...and wondering if you have a favourite French or Mediterranean dish that you like to use them in. Happy to hear you are a fellow Jo Malone spritzer..she has so many new fragrances this season...if I could, I would skip my way to her store in Sloane Square and hang out...adoringly. :)

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  6. What a marvelous post! i love lemons i used to have a lemon tree in my previous home i still miss it (so i just painted one)
    I'm never out of lemons in my home for drinking cooking or backing.
    Now i'll have lots of new recipes and also new books to read .
    Thank you so much Jeanne for featuring my lemon tree print ,

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    1. So glad you enjoyed the post Yael! I just love your work! :)

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  7. What a fun post ... I love lemons and limes. Just seeing them cheers me up.

    Fondly,
    Glenda

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    1. Agree Glenda..a big glass bowl of lemons and limes on the kitchen counter..easy! :)

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  8. I love lemons too. I like to eat them, drink them, spray them, breathe them and then maybe read about them too. Very nice post Jeanne. I agree with the life lessons here too.

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    1. Thank you Pamela...I thought you would like lemons.. :)

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  9. ... Oh lemons are so lovely ... I am a Jo Malone fan from before they were available in US, or maybe just one or two were. I used to pick them up in Sloane Square as well. I have many, but still my "go to" is Amber & Lavender" .... do you mix the Lime Basil and French Lime? I've sampled both, but just can't quite get there yet. I will try again. Thanks Jeanne for a great post.

    Karen in CT

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    1. Hi Karen..I buy the sample box, with six or so fragrances. I mix them all up but admit to Orange Blossom and Grapefruit being my favourite combo. My all time favourite is Blue Agava and Cacao but I find it a bit to intense for the tropics. I used it nearly every day when we lived in England and pop it in my travel bag when I am off to cooler climates. :)

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  10. Great post - I love anything lemon!

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  11. I am a fan, as I'm sure many of your readers are as well, of Meyer lemons. Much easier to find now as I think they are grown on both coasts, and entirely suitable for many lemon recipes. Better yet, a friend of mine and her husband recently purchased a retirement home on the lower east coast of Florida, and in the yard is a very productive what they believe is a Persian lime tree. Big huge babies they are! Having been given a huge bag of the limes a few months ago, I proceeded to use them in a recipe for Key Lime Pie from Joe's Stone Crab in Miami Beach. Wow! A fine tasting Key Lime Pie!

    Now I'll go back and read this post again to see what I might have missed and other tips I might put to use. :-)

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    1. Ohh...Key Lime Pie and how wonderful does a Persian lime tree sound? I managed to get a few Kaffir Lime Leaf plants into Chateau Mango and have been itching to get lime and lemon trees. There is a point where I have to draw the line as we can not take them with us...but still..we do use them all the time. I think I just sold myself..Thank you Judy!

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  12. I love anything lemony! And now that I've read this post I'm going to have to make lemon bars or key lime tarts....yum!

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  13. You're awesome, Jeanne. The day you can't make me smile, I need to be hauled off to the loony bin!
    Loved this and will be taking/making some of these ideas...merci! :)

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    1. I aim to please Heather and just knowing that this post made you smile has made my day complete..as corny as that sounds. :)

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  14. Lets hear it for the Lemons-in any form-I adore them! My mom makes a wicked Lemon Pie! will try books + recipes.Great post. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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    1. Thank you Peggy...your mom's Lemon Pie sounds very tempting! :)

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  15. I much enjoyed this thoughtful and evocative post with all its interesting links and ideas. I'm not so sure about sipping on the lemon water though... I used to drink hot lemon and water in the mornings as I too had heard it was good for the body and the figure but my dentist told me it was very bad for the tooth enamel. He told me only to drink it using a straw so it didn't pass over my teeth. A bit of a faff and I gave it up but I think he had a point. Think of of those citrus peeling face masks and the way a lemon strips the shiny surface off a marble counter - I know, I have one!

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    1. Alas..this is true Tricia, you do have to be careful with all citrus. I stopped drinking orange juice for the same reason. I recall the result of lemon juice on a marble kitchen counter we once had..I have to say it sent me around the bend at times. Old habits die hard..I drink lots of water along with lemons..they seem to go hand in hand. Anyone with teeth issues should be aware of the effects of lemons..thanks for the reminder! :)

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  16. What a delicious post today! From great recipes for my treasured lemons (always seeking those most fragrant at the Good Food Store here in the Rocky Mountains...to that list of great "lemon" reads. Every time you mention a book I head to the on-line catalogue for my wonderful public library and request the title. Seldom are the titles not available at at least one of the linked libraries throughout the western Montana library system..today was no exception and all of the titles are on request. And, I am going to take the time to find some lovely lemons and make that lemon hot drink to sip on this unusually warm May day...tomorrow once again a storm will pass through bringing water to my gardens and sweet fragrance to the lilacs.
    Always, Jeanne, your blog is a delight. I save it to the end of my reading, sip a cup of tea and savor every word. Thank you for this precious gift of story that adds much to my life. Kristin

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    1. Kristin..you are so kind and I appreciate your comments very much. I have another idea for a book for you.. have you read Pomegranate Soup by Marsha Mehran? I thought of this book as I was searching for Lemon books..if you have not read it, you must. I think you would enjoy it. :)

      http://amzn.to/18gLpDD

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  17. Jeanne, a beautiful post! I love lemons, in water or as lemonade but I do not like lemon in my desserts. I have printed this post so that I can check out each link! I love your suggestions and look forward to reading a few new books.

    Just curious, have you ever made preserved lemons? They are delicious and a great addition to so many recipes. We made them in a Moroccan cooking class and I have been making them ever since.

    I hope that you are enjoying your time with Miss Claire, and that you are having some nice weather. The rain is terrible here and so is the humidity.

    Do you have an Farm updates? How is your tree? Looking forward to hearing more about it.

    I hope you have a wonderful day, xx Elizabeth

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    1. Hi Elizabeth..Thank you! I have not made preserved lemons yet but have used them in recipes. It looks easy to do.

      Miss Claire and I are having a wonderful mother/daughter time..which seems to involve a lot of beauty treatments. :)

      Tahilla is coming along..lots of clearing and nail biting back in Vietnam..I know it will look wonderful in the end.

      Best wishes.. xx

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  18. What a wonderful post about Lemons, Jeanne. I love them, no I adore them. Their scent, their taste. How strange today I made couscous with lemon, thyme and pine nuts and then I came to read your blog :) Last Sunday my husband made me a lemon smoothie and I had lemon cake for dessert on Friday when I met up with my girlfriends. It seems like lemons are in the air :) I will have to try some of those recipes - especially Ina's pink lemonade. I love Ina.

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    1. Loree...I would say lemons are definitely in the air in Malta! I agree...Ina has great recipes, I always start with her when I am looking for something. :)

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  19. I'm with you on the lemons / citrus front. Love! One of my favourite dishes in linguine pasta with lemon, parmesan and shrimp. I love a lemon cakes, with drizzled lemon icing too. My daughter Ruby also has a liking for citrus tastes too - one of her most often stated comments is "Its Lemony".
    I recently received a gift of an Origins Grapefruit Body Souffle cream and body scrub. Delicious!

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    1. Sounds wonderful Victoria...am especially loving the sounds of the pasta dish. Enjoy! :)

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  20. This is a wonderful gift of a post -- thank you from someone who loves to wear Oh! de Lancome for a citrus-juicy summer fragrance.

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    1. Thank you...and now I am truly excited, this is new fragrance to me..can't wait to check it out! :)

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  21. This summer...lemon bread and tea at Tahilla. I promise to make some!

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  22. What a lovely post! I'm going to go back and read it all again! Jane x

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    1. Thank you Jane...so glad you enjoyed it! :)

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  23. And of course you will have to have some lemon trees on your farm. And definitely a finger lime. And of course, potted cumquats are must - so elegant and so useful.
    Another book that I thought was a good read was "Driving over Lemons" by Chris Stewart (Genesis band member) who bought a place in Spain which has given him enough material to write several books!
    I have taken to having a hot lemon and ginger drink every morning which I feel may have some impact on my weight loss - so I guess the price is slimmer but don't smile!
    I have a little potted citrus on my Juliet balcony of my holiday apartment when I am in France. It says it all....loirevillageescape.com

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    1. Sunny Fields...thank you for your great book suggestion! I am holding onto the thought of you, a Juliet balcony, potted citrus...all in the Loire Valley...must be heaven! :)

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  24. I agree. And do. We have a lemon tree...love lemons and all they ways they can turn up in recipes. Such a fun post, this!

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    1. Thank you Becky...we must get a lemon tree! :)

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  25. Dear Jeanne it is such a perfect fruit, I have almost come to love lemon deserts over chocolate (shhh, don't tell any chocoholics!)

    Please do join my latest giveaway and feature.
    Xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

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  26. What a fabulous post. I adore lemons and am so happy when I am in Australia and it's lemon harvest time. That pasta recipe looks divine too - definitely going to try that one out. S x

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    1. Lemon harvest time in Australia...another wonderful thought! Thanks Sarah!! xx

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Can I just say....that I so enjoy what YOU have to say. If you would like to write to me directly, I would love to hear from you... jeannecollageoflife@gmail.com

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