meyer lemons on the menu

growing up i thought i had a regular lemon tree in my back yard. “meyer” lemon meant nothing to me. all i heard was lemon. i used to make guacamole with these things (and avocados from the yard). the thought now makes me shudder. meyer lemons are much sweeter and have significantly lower acid than their more commonly used siblings – the Lisbon and Eureka varieties. in cooking, substituting a meyer lemon for a regular lemon can be tricky and should be avoided. fortunately, their distinctive flavor works very nicely in many desserts.

back in march the lemon tree was laden with fruit. i harvested about 25 pounds (about half the fruit on the tree) and brought them in to bar agricole. our wonderful pastry chef majkin klare decided to use them in her meyer lemon tart which had been on and off the menu for the last few months. the tarts came out great with a brighter and more intense lemony flavor than previous iterations. we were serving this particular tart when the reviewer from the LA times came in. she commented on the tart in her brief review calling it “perfect”. this compliment definitely has more to do with majkin’s talents than my homegrown lemons but i’ll gladly steal some of the credit.

on the plate: shortbread crust with meyer lemon curd, foraged wild huckleberries, and honeyed whipped cream.

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