I guess naturalized lemons, originating from the rootstock of grafted lemons, grow just about anywhere in the world where there are neglected lemon trees, but they seem to be regarded with a particular fondness in Australia. We call them “bush lemons.”
Bush lemons are popular “wild food”, so it is not surprising that recipes which take advantage of them appeared regularly in Australian newspapers in the past – thrifty housewives being incapable of ignoring such free bounty. The fruit is not beautiful – it is knobbly and rough and thick-skinned – but very “lemony” and ideal for preserves of all sorts.
Bush Lemon Jelly.
This prize recipe for using bush lemons which are plentiful now, produces a jelly excellent in colour, flavour, and consistency. Wash the lemons, scrubbing if necessary, wipe them, and slice them roughly, putting the fruit into a preserving pan, with two cups of water allowed to each lemon. Boil till the contents of the pan are reduced by one half. Strain the juice, measure it and return to pan, adding one cup of sugar to each cup of juice. Boil for one hour or until a small quantity jellies when tested on a cool plate. Bottle, and seal when cold.
The Richmond River Herald and Northern Districts Advertiser (NSW) 1 December, 1931
Bush Lemon Jam Recipe
HERE is a recipe that will prove of special use to country readers.This bush lemon jam has quite a different flavour from the usual marmalade. The recipe was contributed by Mrs. G. Jeffs, Kingaroy, who wins to-day's prize of 2/6.Slice three bush lemons finely and put on to boil with 8 cups ofwater. Boil for 80 minutes quickly,and add 8 cups of sugar. Boil for 1 hour longer and bottle while still hot.
The Courier-Mail (Brisbane, Qld. 9 June, 1945
With Bush Lemons. The following method for using bush lemons is sent by S. Kite. Strain the juice from a quantity of bush lemons and put it in a pan with three pounds of sugar to each pint of juice. Boil for 7 minutes. Bottle and use as ordinary lemon syrup.
The Courier-Mail (Brisbane, Qld) 14 Sept 1939