When I first heard the word YUZU I thought it was just another term created to further confuse those of us who have not yet, and might not ever, completely embrace cyberspace and all things technical.
Cyberspace - to boldly go where no other grandma has gone before.
My kids were actually amazed that I could create my own blog without their help (and actually, I surprised myself as well). But I was QUICKLY put into place by my THREE year old grandson, who corrected me one recent Sunday morning at the coffee shop when I asked him what he was playing on his computer. He just gave me "that look", and said "Grandma, it's an ipad ... NOT a computer." And thus, I would from that point forward be categorized by my grandson as someone not all knowing and powerful. The grandma who could make the cat appear and disappear under the table by the use of a piece of tuna, much to my grandson's delight. The grandma who knew the names of "almost" every character in Disney's movie Cars (and I still want to call him Steve McQueen instead of Lightning McQueen). The grandma who always carries a piece of his favorite candy in her purse in case of booboo emergencies ...
But I digress ... back to YUZU ...
THIS is Yuzu!!!
If you haven’t yet discovered the joys of the Asian citrus yuzu (YOO-zoo), pick up a bottle at your earliest convenience. It may well become a favorite: in sauces, beverages, desserts and any place you’d use lemon, lime or grapefruit. With all due respect to these three wonderful citrus fruits, yuzu has more panache (I just love that word ... and it's my blog so I'll say it again ... PANACHE!
Yuzu has become more mainstream thanks to the availability of imported yuzu juice, embraced by fine chefs. You can find it at Asian markets, online, and sometimes at specialty retailers such as Whole Foods Market.
What Is Yuzu?
Yuzu is a small round citrus the the size of a key lime. Unlike the key lime, which has a smooth skin, yuzu has a textured skin similar to lemons, limes and grapefruit. As with other varieties of lime, the skin color ranges from yellow to yellow-green to green.
Yuzu is less tart than lemon or lime, and both complex and elegant in taste. You can discern a combination of grapefruit, lime, lemon and tangerine in both the flavor and aroma. The unique complexity and aroma make it irresistible.
Originating in China, yuzu is believed to be a hybrid of the sour mandarin orange and the Ichang papeda citrus, a primitive citrus fruit. Today yuzu is most widely cultivated in Japan. Fresh yuzu cannot be imported into the U.S., but it is now grown in California. The season is September to December. Look for it at at Asian markets and specialty food stores.
If you can’t find fresh yuzu locally during the season, you can order it from Melissas.com. Fresh yuzu is well worth the treat. As much of a treat as fresh yuzu is—replete with its heavenly, aromatic zest—bottled yuzu juice is also a luxury.
If you do score fresh yuzu, never discard the rind without zesting it. Yuzu zest in cocktails adds a dash of magic (like Disneyland in a glass).
So let me know if you've ever had YUZU and then bring some over and we'll make some cocktails and watch Cars (for the 18th time)!