I’m working on a new novel right now and I’m in the middle of a dinner scene. It’s making me hungry. So I decided to write a post about one of my favorite ingredients: Meyer lemons. I had never even heard of Meyer lemons until I moved to California. I guess I just assumed the grocery store kind (which are Eurekas) was the only kind. Happily, I was wrong.

 Meyers are sweeter than Eurekas, with a more complex, almost floral taste. They smell wonderful even before you cut into them. Right now my Meyer tree is blooming, perfuming the entire back yard and even the house.

 I’ve been trying to use up the current crop, so in the past several weeks I’ve made to-die-for lemon pie (4 of them!) as well as lemon pudding cake and lemon cranberry muffins. I’m considering lemon custard ice cream too, if I feel ambitious.

 What are some of your favorite but slightly obscure ingredients?