Zest – flavor or interest; piquancy.

WHEN A RECIPE CALLS FOR ZEST, IT’S TALKING ABOUT THE VERY OUTSIDE LAYER OF A CITRUS FRUIT, WHAT MOST PEOPLE CALL THE “PEEL OR RIND.” IT’S THE COLORED PART OF THE SKIN THAT GIVES ORANGES, LEMONS, AND LIMES THEIR BRIGHT CRAYON BOX OF COLORS. IT’S THE ZEST THAT CONTAINS ALL OF THE RICH, FRAGRANT OILS THAT GIVE THAT BOOST OF ADDED FLAVOR TO A DISH OR RECIPE.

THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO ZEST A FRUIT, MUCH AS THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO COOK AN EGG, BUT I DIGRESS . . . YOU CAN USE A CITRUS ZESTER, A GRATER, A MICROPLANE OR RASP, A VEGETABLE PEELER, OR EVEN A SHARP PARING KNIFE. AS EASY AS IT IS, SOUNDS, AND LOOKS, THERE ARE STILL A FEW THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND:
MAKE SURE YOU REMOVE ONLY THE MOST OUTER LAYER OF COLORED ZEST, LEAVING THE WHITE “PITH” BEHIND. THE PITH IS BITTER AND CAN OVERPOWER THE FLAVOR OF THE ZEST – NOT GOOD ! ! !

20130820-234537.jpg
ZEST YOUR CITRUS FIRST, BEFORE JUICING OR USING ANY OTHER PART OF THE FRUIT IN YOUR RECIPES – IT’S EASIER – ZESTING A JUICED FRUIT IS LIKE TRYING TO ZEST A FLAT TIRE !

CHOOSE YOUR METHOD OF ZESTING BASED ON HOW IT WILL BE USED IN YOUR RECIPE. IF THE ZEST IS ONLY FOR FLAVOR, USE A RASP OR GRATER – THE BLADES DON’T CUT QUITE AS “CLEAN” AS A ZESTER OR KNIFE, THIS CAUSES A SLIGHTLY BRUISED ZEST WHICH WILL RELEASE MORE OILS FOR FLAVOR.

IF YOU’RE USING THE ZEST AS A GARNISH, USE A ZESTER, A PEELER, OR A PARING KNIFE. THESE WILL GIVE YOU NICE, EVEN, STRIPS. A PEELER OR KNIFE WILL ALSO LET YOU REMOVE LARGE PIECES OF ZEST, WHICH YOU CAN THEN CUT OR CHOP AND USE AS DESIRED.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s