Friday, December 02, 2005

Volcano Lemon & Lime Bursts

When I was growing up we always had a big green bottle of lemon juice in the fridge. It was from concentrate and tasted of chemicals. Nasty stuff. Fortunately my in-laws have a lemon tree and give me boxes of fresh lemons. But limes are another story...

I buy limes when I'm making Mexican food. The problem is I rarely use them before they turn into hard brown rocks. So I was interested to try Volcano Lime Burst from Dream Foods. I first encountered Dream Foods at the Fancy Food Show a couple of years ago. I was really impressed with their organic blood orange juice. It was a gorgeous crimson color and tasted so juicy and fresh.

Now they've introduced Volcano Lime and Lemon Bursts, packaged in those familiar squeezable lemon and lime shaped plastic containers. As with their other products both of these are organic and not from concentrate. They have no additives except for a little citric acid as a preservative. They also have a good dose of citrus oil in them to make them taste more like the real thing. The lime juice is from Mexico and the lemon juice is from Sicily.

Fresh lemon juice is a real kitchen staple, especially in Italy. It brightens flavors and is a terrific way to dress up the simplest of dishes. When I lived in Florence we squirted lemon juice and a splash of olive oil on spinach transforming it into something positively scrumptious.

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for using the real stuff but if you end up throwing out limes and lemons, this is a great solution. 6.7 ounces sells for $1.99 each. Keep your eyes open for the Blood Orange Juice too. You can find Dream Foods products at local stores using the store finder.

Here are some of the ways I use fresh lemon and lime juice:

* Lemon juice and olive oil to dress up steamed greens

* Lemon juice in water keeps artichokes from turning brown before cooking

* Dip slices of apple in lemon juice to keep from browning

* Mix lemon or lime juice with orange marmalade to make fruit salad dressing

* Squirt lemon or lime juice on grilled or sauteed fish

* Use lemon or lime juice in place of vinegar in salad dressing

* Mix lemon or lime juice with powdered sugar to make a glaze for cakes and muffins

* Marinate chicken in lemon or lime juice with yogurt