CLOSED Nielsen-Massey review and giveaway: the citrus connection!

There’s something utterly delicious and refreshing when it comes to citrus fruits. In the midst of summer, when the heat goes up and the appetite goes down, who wouldn’t go for a glass of thirst-quenching orange juice? Who wouldn’t crave an aromatic lemon-infused ice cream? Who wouldn’t dream of getting their teeth into a blood orange and wipe their face of the juice bursting through every tiny pocket of ruby red orange goodness? Yes, yes, yes: I’m a big fan of citrus, and I’m very loud and proud about it 🙂

Cooking with citrus is a great way to add an extra layer of flavor to both savory and sweet dishes, and if you’ve been reading this blog for awhile you know that I use citrus in my recipes extensively (here’s one example). And yet, buying fresh citrus from the grocery store is sometimes impossible, for various reasons. The weather might be so hot that you don’t feel like getting out of the house and driving to the grocery store. On other occasions, you simply cannot leave the house because family members need your undivided attention. This is when citrus extracts from your spice cabinet can actually come in handy! Being housebound due to the squelching heat across Chicagoland and to the new addition to our family, I can definitely vouch for that 😉 Thankfully, my citrus extract collection has got bigger recently, when I was contacted by Nielsen-Massey to review an item from their new line of organic products. As someone who had collaborated with Nielsen-Massey in the past (check out my previous reviews here and here) and as a big fan of lemons, I was definitely interested to review the latest Nielsen-Massey pure lemon organic extract. What follows is my full review of this new item.

Nielsen-Massey’s new line of organic pure extracts features four flavors (almond, lemon, orange and peppermint) made with certified organic ingredients. The organic pure lemon extract contains California lemon oil rounded out with peel notes, and it offers “a convenient and tasty alternative to having to zest or juice lemons.” According to Nielsen-Massey, you can use this extract to add a splash of bright flavor to both sweet and savory dishes.

I was interested to see how versatile this extract really was, so I decided to use in two dishes, one savory, one sweet. For my savory dish I picked one of the recipes featured on the Nielsen-Massey website, which I was sure DH would enjoy: Easy Stove Top Tikka Masala Style Chicken. This truly was “a blast from the past” – I used to make this dish a lot when we lived in the UK, but for some reason never made it again ever since we moved to Chicago. The recipe called for conventional lemon extract, but I used the organic variety, and the dish was a great success. One teaspoon of the extract was just what was needed to cut through the dense heavy cream&tomato-based sauce, and to infuse the chicken with a vibrant, zesty flavor. I thought the use of the lemon extract in this dish was appropriate and inspired, and I will definitely make it again in the future. This straightforward, simple recipe is a keeper!

For dessert, I went back to one of the best recipes ever posted on this blog, and a definite crowd pleaser: éclairs! I swear by the pastry cream featured in this recipe, which is also one of the reasons I make it so often (I used it recently in a dessert I made for Mother’s Day). I made two portions of éclairs and doubled the quantities for both the choux and the cream. I used 1 1/2 tsp organic pure lemon extract in the latter, and the cream got a delightful flavor and perfume. It tasted of real lemons, so different from the artificial flavors you encounter with some other extracts. I was looking for authenticity in terms of taste and smell, and my expectations were fulfilled.

I was so inspired by this extract that I decided to use it in a cherry compote as well, to complement the éclairs. I made the compote with 2 cups pitted cherries, 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar, 1/2 cup water and 1 tsp lemon extract. I recommend this compote as a fitting summery addition to the éclairs – and another excellent way to use organic lemon extract!

I thoroughly enjoyed the bright, zesty taste and perfume of the Nielsen-Massey pure organic lemon extract I tried. Not only did my dishes gain an extra layer of flavor and freshness, but they also showcased the versatility of flavor extracts more broadly, and made me want to continue to experiment with extracts in the future. As an added bonus, I didn’t have to leave the house to face the hot weather outside. I stayed inside, cooked and baked, and spent a wonderful time with my newborn – and that’s the best bonus of all 🙂

Nielsen-Massey is offering Chicago Loves Panini readers the chance to win one bottle of organic pure lemon extract to recreate the aforementioned recipes at home.

To enter the giveaway, leave a comment on this post and answer the following question: What extracts do you normally use when cooking?

Giveaway open to US residents 18 years of age or older. One entry per person. Deadline for entries is 6PM central time on July 13th, 2018. One winner will be chosen on or around July 14th, 2018 by using a random number generator and will have 72 hours to respond to the winner notification email. I reserve the right to pick an alternative winner if the original winner does not contact me 72 hours after receipt of winner notification email.

Good luck!

*Disclaimer: While I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review, all opinions expressed here are my own.


43 Comments

  • Mary Beth Elderton

    June 29, 2018

    I use vanilla alot and almond a fair amount of time. But I also love all things lemon in the hot summer!

    Reply
  • Abigail Gibson

    July 1, 2018

    I use vanilla and cinnamon a lot when I cook and bake.

    Reply
  • Ami Knecht

    July 1, 2018

    I’m boring and usually just use vanilla but I do have orange that I’m planning on using!

    Reply
  • Claudia Davis

    July 2, 2018

    My top three extracts that I use are almond, lemon and vanilla.

    Reply
  • Fredrick Pauly

    July 3, 2018

    We use vanilla, almond, pumpkin spice and lemon.

    Reply
  • meghan

    July 3, 2018

    I bake with vanilla a lot, but not a lot of others!

    Reply
  • Cynthia Conley

    July 3, 2018

    I mostly use vanilla, almond and coconut extracts.

    Reply
  • Heather D

    July 3, 2018

    I use a lot of vanilla extract. I’ve been meaning to buy orange and lemon.

    Reply
  • Kelly Stewart

    July 3, 2018

    i love vanilla and mint

    Reply
  • Ashley C

    July 3, 2018

    I use tons of vanilla extract

    Reply
  • Priscilla Bryant

    July 4, 2018

    I use vanilla alot! I am an open to trying other, i dont think that i use more flavors due to the fact that I am unfamiliar with them! Maybe you could select some favorite recipes to go with with this win!

    Reply
  • Kristina

    July 4, 2018

    I mainly use vanilla extract, but I’ve also used peppermint and orange. Never tried lemon, but I’d love to.

    Reply
  • al

    July 4, 2018

    Vanilla extract, especially when making French Toast.

    Reply
  • Kylie P

    July 4, 2018

    Vanilla and Almond are the two that I regularly use.

    Reply
  • Steph

    July 4, 2018

    I use vanilla and almond often

    Reply
  • Elena

    July 4, 2018

    My family loves everything and anything tropical, so I’ve been making desserts with mango, coconut, and pineapple extracts! So delicious!

    Reply
  • Robin M

    July 5, 2018

    I use vanilla and almond extracts

    Reply
  • janie

    July 6, 2018

    Vanilla and Almond to make cookies!

    Reply
  • Ashley B

    July 6, 2018

    Vanilla!

    Reply
  • Hanna D,

    July 8, 2018

    I use mostly vanilla and almond.

    Reply
  • Missy

    July 8, 2018

    I use almond the most, but the idea of lemon makes my mouth water!

    Reply
  • Brianna Cavins

    July 9, 2018

    Mostly Vanilla

    Reply
  • Cheryl Chervitz

    July 10, 2018

    Most of the time I use vanilla, have used almond and mint too.

    Reply
  • Janis Hill

    July 11, 2018

    What a great giveaway, Mickey! I use a good amount vanilla extract, just as most cooks/bakers do. I also use citrus (lemon and orange, but coffee extract is so good in homemade ice cream or frappes. or a little added to whipped cream used on top of a moist chocolate cake is beyond delicious.

    Reply
  • Tanya Findlay

    July 11, 2018

    Vanilla, Lemon or coffee extracts mostly… never together though

    Reply
  • Marianna

    July 11, 2018

    I mostly use vanilla

    Reply
  • Kiera G

    July 12, 2018

    I use almond and vanilla

    Reply
  • Jennifer H.

    July 12, 2018

    I use mint and vanilla.

    Reply
  • John H.

    July 12, 2018

    I use vanilla.

    Reply
  • Ashley Kolpak

    July 13, 2018

    I use vanilla and almond!

    Reply
  • Angie W

    July 13, 2018

    My top is vanilla! I sometimes use almond, mint, and lemon.

    Reply
  • Ellen Levickis

    July 13, 2018

    I use only vanilla. I make the same things over and over. I need to add something lemony.

    Reply
  • Anne Perry

    July 13, 2018

    I use organic vanilla.

    Reply
  • monique s

    July 13, 2018

    I use lemon and orange from the fruit side and vanilla and almond from the nut side

    Reply
  • Amanda Hoffman

    July 13, 2018

    Vanilla only

    Reply
  • Darlene Owen

    July 13, 2018

    I usually use Vanilla extract.

    Reply
  • wen budro

    July 13, 2018

    I use vanilla, orange, and lemon extracts the most.

    Reply
  • Dan H

    July 13, 2018

    Usually lemon and orange

    Reply
  • Fiona N

    July 13, 2018

    I normally use vanilla and banana oil when cooking and baking:)
    Thank You for the chance!

    Reply
  • Breanne

    July 13, 2018

    I use vanilla and almond.

    Reply
  • Julie Waldron

    July 13, 2018

    I normally use vanilla extract.

    Reply
  • Ae Minx

    July 13, 2018

    WE use a lot of vanilla.. sometimes almond

    Reply
  • Angela Saver

    July 13, 2018

    I use almond and vanilla extract a lot in my cooking/baking! I would love to try Nielsen-Massey extracts! Thanks for the chance!

    Reply

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