Meyer lemons
How to choose: Named for the man who first imported them from China, Meyer lemons are probably an orange-lemon hybrid, with sweeter juice and a rounder shape than ordinary lemons. Green patches indicate underripeness. Choose firm, heavier fruits for maximum juice.

Preparation tips: Mix juice and zest into rice pilaf with raisins and pumpkin seeds, or mix with grated celery root, along with mayonnaise, sharp mustard, and herbs. You can also add the juice or zest to ginger-spiked muffin batter. For a zippy dip, blend with tofu or cream cheese, minced shallots, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and your favorite seasonings. To enjoy year-round, freeze juice in ice-cube trays, then transfer to zip-top bags.

Health benefits: One lemon packs 40 percent or more of your daily vitamin C, plus potassium.

—Elisa Bosley

Lemon Squares (Makes 16)

1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup oat bran
3/4 cup granulated sugar or sucanat, divided
Dash of sea salt
1/3 cup raw whole almonds
1/4 cup unsalted butter, chopped
2 eggs
1 tablespoon freshly grated Meyer lemon peel
3 tablespoons fresh Meyer lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
Powdered sugar (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Mix flour, oat bran, 1/4 cup sugar, and salt in a food processor. Add almonds and pulse until chopped. Add butter and blend until mixture resembles coarse meal. Press onto bottom of an 8x8-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Bake 18 minutes.

2. Beat remaining 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, lemon peel and juice, baking powder, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a food processor or with an electric mixer on high speed for 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Pour over baked layer.

3. Bake 20 minutes or just until almost no indentation remains when touched lightly in the center. Cool completely. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. Cut into squares.

Nutrition Facts Per Piece:
Calories: 119 calories
% fat calories: 38
Fat: 5g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Cholesterol: 34mg
Protein: 3g
Carbohydrate: 17g
Fiber: 2g
Sodium: 46mg

Recipe provided by James Rouse, ND, the creator of Optimum Wellness and The Fit Kitchen, seen weekly on NBC’s KUSA television news.