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Dried Lemon Peels

Today's posts subject is one of my all-time favorites, Dried Lemon Peels! I like many of us use lemon daily in my water, juicing, recipes, and teas. Most people toss lemon peel aside or into a compost bin. Although I always promote composting, doing this with lemon peel is tossing an easy to make and multifaceted ingredient away. Let's go over some of the many benefits adding dried lemon peel into your diet creates. 1) Lemon peel contains vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, folate, calcium, and beta-carotene. 2) Makes for an EXCELLENT DIY home cleaning agent. 3) Dried lemon peel tea has an alkalizing effect on the digestive system and can help soothe an upset stomach in minutes.

Great! Let's Make it!

After using your lemons collect the outer peel. If there is more pulp be sure to remove, you just want the peel. Now, depending on how much peel you have, you can either do the next step the same day or place slices into the freezer saving for later. I eat about 1-2 lemons a day so I use the freezer method. If I juice that day and have plenty of lemon peel to work with I just move onto the next step.

Now take the lemon peels and chop up into thin slices, chucks, or what-ever smaller shapes you prefer.

Try your best to keep them all about the same size to ensure even timing when drying. Place the chopped peel on a baking sheet. Depending on where you live in the world and how much sun you get, you have a few options for the next step. One way is simply to place the lemon peels out in th sun to sun-dry for a few days. You will know when they are dry because they will no longer have the flexibility and will have hardened. The other faster option is to place the baking tray into the oven on LOW heat 200-225 degrees. Remove when pieces are dried and have a light golden tint. I will warn you, with the oven method one can easily lose track of time and result in burnt peels. I speak from many personal experiences with this, whoops... If that does happen to you, use the burnt pieces in your next potpourri mix for a yummy toasted citrus scent. Once fully dried and cooled, store in a glass, ceramic, or wooden container.

How do I use Dried Lemon Peel?

1) Dried Lemon Peel Powder Oh my, this is one of my top uses! Place the dried lemon peel into a coffee grinder or food processor. Grind into a powder. Place in glass, ceramic or wooden jar and store in a cool, dry space. I keep mine on the kitchen counter as I use it almost daily. Sprinkle on yogurt, salad, ice cream, or anything you would like to have a lemon twist. You can mix this powder into smoothies, desserts, dressings, candies, and DIY body-care like sugar or salt scrubs. This powder packs a punch and a little goes a long way. An excellent way to help boost your immune system, especially if you are already experiencing dis-ease in the body. A fun treat I like to make is lemon peel powder ice cubes! The perfect addition to any cool beverage on a hot day in the garden. 2) Dried Lemon Peel Tea My preferred tummy tamer. Place a pinch of the dried lemon peels or powder into a cup of tea for an excellent way to ease indigestion and stomach pains. Again, it will pack a punch! Most people find it more palatable with a bit of honey or sweetener added. Here is my tea recipe when my stomach isn't feeling great: In your tea water place a teaspoon of dried lemon peel or 1/2 teaspoon powder, a cap-full of apple cider vinegar, a pinch of fennel seed, and honey to taste. Let steep for 5-10 minutes, strain (if you prefer to), and enjoy. From my experience, it only takes a few minutes to feel relief. 3) DIY Home Cleaner Using a large glass mason jar, fill halfway with white vinegar and add four tablespoons of the dried lemon peel. Let sit for two weeks. Then strain and top off the jar with water. Great for the kitchen and bathroom it is a safe and natural cleaner that is tough on grease, scum, and is anti-bacterial. Most of all, have fun! Send loving thoughts and intentions into your creations and enjoy all that lemon peel has to offer. Peace, Love & Light Gretchen <3

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