Here’s a bright idea
to kick the late-winter
blues right off your plate: Add zest to your
cooking with citrus, in season and
everywhere right now.

By Sarah Tenaglia
February 21, 2017
citrus lime lemon grapefruit orange
Photography by Paul Sirisalee
| Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee

The Fresh Test

When selecting the freshest, juiciest citrus fruit, you should rely on your hands. When comparing citrus of the same size, pick the one that feels heavier. The lighter the fruit, the longer it's likely to have been sitting at the supermarket.

Spiced Cauliflower with Quick-Preserved Meyer Lemon
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee
asian style ribs ginger orange
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee

Smart Storage

How you store your citrus determines how long it will last.

FRESH FOR 1 WEEK: Store the fruit in a cool, dark spot in your pantry.

FRESH FOR 3 WEEKS: Keep them loose in your crisper.

FRESH FOR UP TO 6 WEEKS: Place them in a ziptop bag, sprinkle with a few drops of cold water, seal and refrigerate. Keeping them moist and cool more than triples their shelf life.

pink grapefruit whiskey sours
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee

Loose the Juice

Microwaving your citrus fruit will help you extract the maximum amount of juice. Zapping a piece of citrus on high for 20 to 30 seconds until warmed can increase your juice yield by about 40 percent.    

tangerine salad wild rice fennel
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee
pasta orange lemon pesto pancetta peas
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee

We Asked, You Answered!

When zesting citrus, more than twice as many of you reach for a Microplane grater than opt for a zester. Our test kitchen uses both:a zester for decorative, thin strips, and a Microplane grater for finely grated zest.

coconut shortcake lime curd mixed berry
Credit: Photography by Paul Sirisalee