Secret Ingredient: Charred Lemons

Chefs are known for having little secrets up their sleeves that take an ordinary dish and make it extraordinary.

Ever take a bite of something at a restaurant that "looks" like something you've eaten before only to be surprised by the subtle difference in flavor? It's familiar... but somehow different.

As the tasty dish is rolling over your tongue, your senses become heightened, you concentrate hard but are dumbfounded-  you think "What IS this I'm tasting? What's the secret ingredient?"

Often, the mystery ingredient isn't so secret- it's a tiny spin on an everyday ingredient or technique that changes EVERYTHING. And often confuses your taste buds because, well, you weren't "expecting" it. (Hint- That's the secret!)

Meet one such staple of a chef's secret arsenal: Charred Lemons.

Made simply by cutting in half, brushing with a little oil and charring over an open flame, charred lemons take a spritz of lemon to a whole new level.

By exposing the lemon to heat and flame, the acids mellow, the fruit sweetens and the flavor of the juice gets a rich, complex taste.

Once grilled, you can spritz them over just about anything. My favorites?

  • Grilled asparagus
  • Steamed broccoli
  • Zucchini noodles with garlic
  • Chicken prepared almost any way
  • Fish
  • Shrimp
  • Grilled pork chops
  • Tomato & cucumber salad
  • As a salad dressing
  • As a garnish for a cocktail (works beautifully with bourbon or gin forward drinks!)

Next time you've got the BBQ going, give these tender, delicious juice bombs a try!

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