I have a lot of lemons. I drink a lot of tea.

I've been experimenting, by slicing lemons, putting them in water, and letting them simmer for a long time, reducing the water 2-3X, then impulse blend them, and put them in a tea cup with some simple syrup.

The first few times I did this, the taste was great.

Lately, the taste has been completely bitter. The lemons are fine for other "normal" lemony things.

I have tried cutting off all the peeling, and just have the inner part, and that was bitter as well.

I'm stuck. My only remaining idea is that the seeds might be bitter, causing the problem (maybe my earlier lemons were seedless? Is there such a thing?)

TLDR: I'd like to simmer lemons for several hours, impulse blend them, add some sugar and have a tasty hot drink. Instead it ends up totally bitter. Why? Is there something I can do to remedy this?

  • are you wanting to do something like the Korean Citron Tea ? mykoreankitchen.com/yuja-tea-korean-citron-tea
    – Max
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 18:36
  • @Max, I was making this up as I went along, but the Korean Citron Tea is similar to what I was trying to do, although I was not trying to make a marmalade first. The article you linked to, implies that you have to let the marmalade sit for a few weeks to reduce bitterness, after separating pith... Interesting observation.
    – John
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 19:37

1 Answer 1


One strategy to reduce lemon bitterness is to slice, bring to a boil, then drain. Refill pot, and repeat. Do this 3 or 4 times. Then, proceed with your recipe. This is a strategy employed when making candied citrus. It could be helpful in your case.

  • Would you remove the peel or leave it on?
    – csk
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 19:40
  • It sounds like the OP wants to use the entire fruit. I've used this process with peel only, and with slices of citrus
    – moscafj
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 19:47

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