The Morocco, featuring Preserved Lemons
- 2 oz chilled Vodka
- ½ oz dry Vermouth
- ¼ preserved lemon (see below)
Remove and discard pulp from lemon rind. Rinse rind, slice into thirds, and place on cocktail skewer.
Shake liquid ingredients with ice in cocktail shaker; strain into chilled Martini glass. Garnish with lemon and serve.
- 12 organic lemons
- lots of salt
- Optional: Bay leaf, cinnamon, black pepper, etc.
Wash lemons thoroughly. Quarter and remove all visible seeds.
Cover the bottom of a glass jar with salt and throw in any spices you want to include. Roll each lemon quarter in salt, coating as thoroughly as possible. Place it in the jar. As jar fills, press down. Your goal is to force enough juice out that the lemons are mostly covered in their own juice when the jar is filled. When the jar is mostly full, sprinkle some more salt on top, close the jar, and let it sit at room temperature for two weeks. Should yeild about two jars, depending on the size of your jars and your lemons.
- The reason this drink rocks so hard is that the preserved lemon combines the fresh astringency of a lemon twist (outdoes it, in fact, in my opinion) with the savoriness of an olive.
- I'm not usually a stickler for organic...os...ity... But. Since you're actually gonna be eating the rinds, it's desirable here. Small, thin-skinned lemons seem to work better for this, or at least faster.
- I think a skewer is more important here than for conventional martinis. The preserved lemon is a bit big and intense to be eaten all at once, and its flat shape makes it harder to pick out of a half-finished drink than an olive or cocktail onion. Cutting and skewering allows you to pace your nibbling to go along with the drink.
It's important to make sure that the lemons are completely covered with liquid. Authorities disagree on whether it's okay to add a little salted water if the lemon juice ain't doing it. I suspect it won't kill you. If you want to be conservative, use the juice of an additional lemon instead.
Do not make this recipe when you have a hangnail, or you will be sad.
The pulp, which most recipes call for discarding just before use, is very tasty minced fine and sprinkled on a cream-cheese-and-lox sandwich.
Magid reports that she seeks out extra-thick-skinned lemons, ages them a month (displaying more self-restraint than I think I have in me), and never bothers to remove the pulp. We'll have to have a tagine-off at some point and compare results.