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Here at FruitStand, we think fresh yuzu is something every fruit lover needs to experience! Even though yuzu fans will tell you there’s nothing in the world like it (and they’re right), their flavor is often compared to a cross between grapefruit and mandarin orange. That’s because yuzu has a pleasantly bitter and sweet citrus flavor that’s specific to yuzu alone. It’s known to be exceptionally fragrant with zesty and sour citrusy aromas.
Typically used as a flavorful ingredient rather than a raw fruit for snacking, there are many ways to prepare yuzu in snacks, dishes and drinks. They’re edible raw, and from there, yuzu can be dried, frozen, cooked, candied and preserved in countless ways. Yuzu seeds are not edible, but they’re often used in applications like ponzu sauce, vinegars or other infusions to impart citrusy flavor into liquids, proteins and creams.
On the outside, yuzu has golden yellow skin that’s naturally bumpy. Inside, the fruit is a light yellow and glitters with shiny pulp. Between the skin and the fruit is an off white pith. The seeds are tanish white with a layer of fresh green skin.
It’s easy to tell when yuzu is ripe by its color, fragrance and feel. A fully ripened yuzu is round and somewhat squat and ranges in size from that of a lemon to a grapefruit. They are a golden yellow color, and may still have hints of green on its skin. Their potent fragrance is sweet, citrusy and zesty. Finally, when you hold the fruit, it should feel a little heavy for its size and the skin should be naturally bumpy yet taut.
How to prepare your fresh yuzu fruit will depend on the recipe you’re using. Here are the most common ways to prepare them for just about any recipe.
Yuzu fruits have zest and juice that can be enjoyed raw in bushels of recipes, from salads to sauces, and fresh fish to candy confections. Like other citrus fruits, yuzu has a thick, leathery peel with a thin layer of zest on the outside. Inside, the fruit is arranged in individual sections of pulpy juice with many seeds scattered throughout. If you’ve ever sliced a lemon or an orange, you’ll have an easy time slicing yuzu!
If using the whole fruit, simply slice in half through the circumference into two pieces. From there, continue slicing into rounds or wedges.
For zest, use a paring knife or microplane to remove the thin layer away from the fruit and leave behind any white pith.
Yuzu is as delicious as it is useful in many kinds of recipes. Use this tangy fruit in recipes for jellies, jams, marmalades, candies and pies. It’s perfect for savory dishes as well, like sauces, curries and rice. When frozen, yuzu can be added to sorbets and granitas.
- Baking: yuzu can be baked into cakes, breads, creams and pastries.
- Confection: Tangy yuzu is delicious in jams, jellies and candy making because of its bright, acidic flavor.
- Sauces: Use yuzu a to add sour sweetness to soups, stews and flavorful sauces.
Yuzu makes impressive and delicious drinks for fruit fans of all ages! From fresh juice to tea, punch, cocktails and frozen beverages, yuzu adds exquisite flavor and a dose of nutrition to all kinds of drinks. Here are some easy ways use yuzu in your drinks:
- Juicing: Sour, sweet and fragrant, yuzu juice adds unexpected citrus flavor to fresh juice drinks.
- Smoothies: Freeze cubes of yuzu juice and zest in an airtight container in the freezer. You can easily pop the cubes or zest into your favorite citrus-inspired smoothies!
- Cocktails: Yuzu’s clean, bitter-sweet flavor pairs well with liquors like tequila, vodka and gin. Try using yuzu to make a basic syrup, for stirring into drinks.
As they ripen, yuzu can be left on the countertop for up to a week. Keeping yuzu in an airtight container in your crisper drawer can keep them fresh for up to two weeks.
The best way to freeze yuzu is to break it down first. Start by juicing the fruit and pouring the juice into an airtight container or ice cube tray. Carefully separate the zest from the pith and freeze them separately in airtight containers.
Do you feel like a Yuzu eating expert now? Show us your favorite ways to prepare and eat yuzu by tagging us in your culinary masterpieces on Instagram @Fruitstandcom!