Lemons, oranges, limes, grapefruits…the world of citrus has much to offer any meal. It takes just a dash to liven up the flavor favorite dishes, from French toast to fish – but do you know how to use citrus to it’s best advantage?
Which type of citrus you use depends upon the flavor you’re seeking. But in most cases, citrus is interchangeable in recipes. That’s not to say the dish that calls for lemon will taste the same if you substitute orange – but as long as you enjoy the flavor of oranges, the dish will likely turn out great.
When shopping, select the freshest citrus you can find. If you’ll be using the rind (also called the “zest”), choose organically grown citrus.
Unfortunately, most home cooks use bottled citrus juice, which tastes inferior to fresh juice. Unless you’re home canning and need lemon juice that’s been tested for acidity, make your own citrus juice instead.
Before juicing, bring the fruit to room temperature, then roll it on the counter a few times. This helps release some of the juices. Then slice the fruit in half and either use:
* an old fashioned, hand juicer (like this or this)
* an electric juicer
* or simply squeeze the citrus juice into a bowl, fish out the seeds, and apply the juice to the recipe.
It’s fine to freeze any leftover juice.
The “zest” of citrus is the outer skin – the part that is colored, not white. It’s commonly sliced thin or grated to add terrific flavor to foods. An ordinary cheese grater with a “fine grate” panel works just fine for this job – or you can purchase a zester. For getting thin strips of zest, a vegetable peeler does the job.
You can also preserve the zest by freezing it. Or cut the peel into strips, remove the white pith, and dehydrate them in a dehydrator or oven. Later, you can grind these peels in a coffee grinder for zest that can be use any time.
Add Citrus Juice and/or Zest to:
* Pancakes, waffles, and French toast batter
* Green salads
* Quick breads
* Yeast breads
* Rice dishes
* Poaching or simmering water
* Lamb, pork, or chicken
Recommended Citrus Recipes:
Citrus Fruit Soup
Terrine with Orange
Orange Glazed Salmon
Gilthead with Citrus Fruits
Candied Citrus Peel
Lemon Oregano Chicken
Gourmet recipes at your finger tips...