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Black lime are available year-round.
The Black limes are called Loomi in the Middle East, and are often referred to as Omani limes or Limu Omani for their country of origin. Black limes are most often used in the cuisine of Iran, Iraq and northern India.
Black limes are small, like Key limes and are just as the name suggests: black. Fresh limes are boiled in salt water, or brine, and then set out to dry in the sun. This process produces a lime with a hard, leathery outer shell that typically ranges from tan to black, with a near black inner pulp; the darker the lime, the more pungent the flavor. The dried citrus has faint lines that run along the dehydrated sections of the fruit. Black limes are unique, offering a tart citrus flavor with a rich fermented aroma. Black limes have an aroma similar to curry powder.
Black limes are used to impart a citrusy, smoky flavor with a slight tang to soups, meat dishes, rice and stews. The small citrus can transform dishes from plain to spicy and flavorful. Wash the limes and pierce several times with a knife or fork. Drop several Black limes into the liquid for rice, soups or braising and remove before serving. Black limes pair well with lamb, fish and chicken; though the real match for Black limes is said to be legumes.
Bedouin women used Loomi, or Black limes to dye yarn. In Saudi Arabia, Black limes are a staple ingredient in dishes such as kabsa, matazeez, jareesh and qursan.
Originally developed in Oman, a country located south of Iran along the Arabian Sea, Black limes are an essential ingredient in both Persian and Indian cooking. They can be found in Persian food stores or the more adventurous chef can make their own.
Recipes that include Black Limes. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Pomegranates and Zaatar||Red Snapper with Lime (Tibsi Samak bi Loomi)|
|Cafe Liz||Wintry Mangold-Wheat Soup|