Preserved Lemons

Hamed Makbus

Preserved lemons are a conspicuous taste in Moroccan food, and the most highly prized are the very small ones called doqq. The following recipe is easily prepared at home. Purists will object to any seasoning other than the salt so consider the cinnamon, coriander, chiles and peppercorns as optional.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 6 whole unwaxed lemons (about 1 1/2 lbs)
  • 2 1/2 cups lemon juice
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1tablespoon coriander seed
  • 6 tablespoons coarse sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 3-4 whole dried chiles
  • 1 quart jar


If you can't get unwaxed lemons scrub off the wax. Cut the lemons lengthwise into six sections, keeping them attached at the stem, so that the lemon will hold together. Pack 1 tablespoon of salt inside of each lemon. Place lemons, cinnamon, coriander, chiles and black peppercorns into a sterilized jar and completely fill with lemon juice. Seal the jar and leave to mature for 4 weeks in refrigerator. Rinse lemons before using.