Andalusian Pickled Limes

This is another two-for-the-price-of-one recreation of two amazing pickled lime recipes from a 13th-century Tuniso-Andalusian cookery book. The first involves cutting the limes and filling the slits with salt before putting them in their bath of lime vinegar (the post for recreating the mediaeval version will come soon!) and water. Then, it’s time to leave in the sun (or any other warm place you can find if you live in cold northern climes!) for a number of days. Finally, a mixture of capers and honey is added before sealing everything with olive oil and storing for future delectation.

The second recipe (picture No. 2) is similar, except that the stuffing has a much bigger spice kick since it also includes a number of aromatics — cinnamon, spikenard, ginger, pepper, cloves, galangal –, as well as sugar and a little syrup. In addition, mastic is added to the fermentation vinegar. Interestingly enough, the author warns that it should not be touched by anyone who is in a state of ritual impurity — not an uncommon comment at that time as it was believed that this would spoil the dish.

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