Quick Bites from Pender

Moroccan Preserved Sweet Limes – Exotic Salt Cured Citrus #1

In Kitchen Tips, Lessons From Cooking School on February 8, 2010 at 5:01 am


Preserved lemons and limes are a common condiment in Moroccan and North African cuisine.  Their use spread to France and then beyond…The flavour is mildly tart but intensely lemony and is often paired with olives, artichokes, seafood, veal, chicken and rice.

The pulp of the fruit can be used in stews and sauces, but the biggest prize is the peel…  Gently remove the flesh and rinse the peel to remove any surface salt.  Alternatively, you can also blanch the peel to remove more of the salt and accentuate its natural mild sweetness.  Most often it is julienned or minced for use in dishes.


I actually thought these were plain old lemons when I first saw them.  Sweet limes are light yellow, with a greenish pulp and sweet, rather than acidic juice.  They make a very tasty margarita, and once preserved, they will keep for at least 1 year.  Learn the method to salt cure citrus here.

Some Inspirations:

  • lamb tagine (stew) with preserved sweet lime
  • preserved sweet lime and dill compound butter for fish
  • salt-cured sweet lime vinaigrette
  • there has to be a tequila cocktail in there somewhere…
  • sweet lime infused couscous
  • sweet lime and mango chutney

What pops into your head when you hear salted limes?


A trio of salt preserved organic citrus (from left to right):  Meyer lemons with juniper, sweet limes with bay leaf & peppercorns, and tangerines with star anise.

  1. I love this. I have been meaning to preserve some lemons in the Moroccan/Algerian style, so that I could use them in tagine recipes that call for them! I, of course, never have this ingredient. Oh, and there is a sweet lime tree right near my house (might be a key lime tree??). I think I’ve plucked it dry, but maybe if I reach I can get enough to try this.

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