The blog of cooking-ez.com

How to zest a fruit?


31K 46 3.5
Grade this page:

Last modified on: November 5th 2013

How to zest a fruit?

zests


You will have no doubt noticed that many recipes call for the zest of citrus fruit. The zest is that outer layer of the skin which adds so much flavour to a dish.

There are many different ways to peel off the zest and various tools are available. Here is a summary of the “dos and don'ts” of zesting.

The right fruit


Above all, removing the zest means using the fruit's outer skin. This is the part that accumulates the residues from any chemical treatments the fruit may have received.

zester


So, beware: it is essential to wash the fruit thoroughly before zesting. Better still, use organic fruit that is guaranteed untreated.

The right part of the fruit


The zest layer is generally very thin, 1 mm or less, so it is important to remove only the coloured part of the skin, as this is the zest. Avoid at all costs cutting into the white layer underneath, as this is the pith, which is very bitter!

zests


The photo shows zest on the right and ordinary peel on the left, including the awful white pith.

The right tools


There are various tools available for zesting; some work better than others,

zester zester


1) Vegetable peeler or very sharp knife: You will need to "peel" the fruit very carefully and will end up with ribbons of zest (coloured, don't forget: no white bits). Then these will need to be cut into thinner strips or smaller shreds. A time-consuming process, not very efficient, but it works.



zester zester


2) Zester: this is a special, rather odd-shaped knife which allows the zest to be peeled off in thin strips. The zester is designed to prevent cutting into the pith, which is helpful. The disadvantage is that the zest tends to get crushed in the process and ends up losing some of its volatile juices, so it's far from perfect.



zester zester


3) Zest grater: like a cheese grater, but finer, over which the fruit is rubbed. The fruit needs to be turned frequently (the fruit should move, not the grater). This is by far the most efficient method. Try it once and you'll adopt it.

Back to top of page

Lasts posts

Other pages you may also like

Raising (or leavening) agents
Raising (or leavening) agents
Baker's YeastThis is the yeast used by bakers to make bread, brioches, etc. It is basically the same kind that brewers use to make beer, so it is sometimes also known as brewer's yeast.Yeast is a living organism, a microscopic fungus, called saccaromycès cerevisae, which reacts with the sugars...
41K4.5
Making the most of seeds: Dry roasting
Making the most of seeds: Dry roasting
Dry roasting (or torrefaction) in this context is done by putting the seeds in a hot oven, which normally fills the kitchen with the delicious smell. This brief spell in the oven is too short to cook the seeds, but really brings out their flavour. This same principal lies behind roasting coffee,...
35K3.3
85 grams of eggs?
85 grams of eggs?
In pastry making, it's another matter, if you need 250 gr of flour to make a shortbread dough for example, you'd better put 250 gr and not 270 or 230, because at best the dough will become a bit too soft or a bit too hard. This is what makes the rigor that is imposed on pastry cooks, and that...
23K4.5
Steam for baking bread
Steam for baking bread
So steam is indispensable: there are no beautifully browned, crusty loaves without it. You should note that once the crust is formed in the oven, after about 15 or 20 minutes, the steam is no longer necessary, so there is no need to keep adding it for the rest of the cooking time. Creating steam...
110K4.3
What is the difference between bakery and patisserie?
What is the difference between bakery and patisserie?
If you were to ask any baker, they would be likely to give you a one-word answer: fermentation. It's true that this sums it up well: the bread baker always works with fermented doughs made with yeast or leaven (sometimes called “leavened” doughs). These need time to rest and rise, often for...
72K 14

Post your comment or question

I am not a leaving thing

Follow this page

If you are interested in this page, you can "follow" it, by entering your email address here. You will then receive a notification immediately each time the page is modified or a new comment is added. Please note that you will need to confirm this following.
I am not a leaving thing
Note: We'll never share your email with anyone else.
Alternatively: you can subscribe to the mailing list of cooling-ez.com , you will receive a e-mail for each new recipe published on the site.

Back to top of page