Preserved lemon: is there anything it can’t do? Pumpkin roasted in preserved lemon brine, and served with roasted preserved lemon itself, elevates a scrappy fridge dinner to something else entirely.
Since becoming increasingly intolerant to everything under the sun, I’ve had to try and get a bit more creative with how I flavour things (given that the King of flavour, garlic, is out of the question.) I don’t want to say that I drastically overuse preserved lemon in most things, but I will, because I’d be lying if I didn’t.
I like using preserved lemon in the cooking water of quinoa, to spruce up salad dressings, and obviously, for roasting. Not only are the physical pieces of preserved lemon DELICIOUS when roasted (in small chunks, probably not a whole piece) but the flavour that the brine provides cannot be overlooked. While it’s generally quite pricey, preserved lemon is relatively easy to make (I intend to share a how-to post) but also quite time consuming – it takes about a month to reach optimal brininess.
I acknowledge that not everybody wants to spend upwards of $10 on what is essentially a condiment, and not everyone has a month to spare:
what are some other FODMAP friendly flavourings?
- Furikake. This is a Japanese sesame and seaweed condiment that generally contains fish flakes. I like to make mine at home, so I’m guaranteed they contain nothing that will set me off – and I omit the fish flakes for a vego/vegan option
- Herbs. All of the herbs! Personally I can’t deal with chives (or spring onion) but the green parts of spring onion are considered FODMAP friendly, if you feel ok eating them
- Spices. Time to get nifty with making your own spice blends, because a lot of them contain onion and garlic powder. Asafoetida powder is worth looking into (it has a distinctly onion/garlic taste and is therefore a great substitute – find it in Indian grocers) but I personally feel sick smelling it. It’s all down to what works for you.
- Stock. A great FODMAP friendly stock can take your vegetables, quinoa, or whatever, to the next level. Make sure it contains no onion.
- Lemon and lime, juice and rind. Sprinkle it on literally everything, pls.
- Mustard and apple cider vinegar. These are great for tossing through salads to make them exciting. Also great for roasting.
I used Kent pumpkin for this recipe, given it’s lower FODMAP qualities. You could also use coconut yoghurt in place of the Greek if lactose is an issue, but fingers crossed for your general sake that it’s not.
FOR THE PUMPKIN SALAD:
700-800g Pumpkin (I used Jap because it’s FODMAP friendlier)
1-2 tablespoons preserved lemon juice (the more the merrier)
2 ¼ pieces of preserved lemon, chopped
Zest of ½ lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 chilli, chopped (chilli flakes are a good substitute if you forgot a chilli)
Salt and pepper
1 cup (plus more if you like yoghurt) Greek Yoghurt
1 handful coriander, chopped
Extra chilli, to serve
Olive oil, to drizzzzzzle
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon zest, preserved lemon pieces and juice, chilli, and seasoning. Once combined, rub the mixture into each slice of pumpkin. You can allow it to sit and marinate if you have the time.
- Line a large baking tray with baking paper, and spread the pumpkin slices out evenly, covering them in the leftover sauce. Place into the oven and cook for anywhere between 20-40 minutes – this will depend on how thickly you slice your pumpkin.
- To assemble, spread the yoghurt over your assembly vessel of choice, followed by the pumpkin and coriander. I like to top it with a second chilli, and a bit of salt and pepper. I also really like it with some pomegranate arils, which is a word I have enjoyed ever since learning it (although keep in mind that they are not particularly FODMAP friendly, if that’s your thing)