OK, so it’s not like Eataly needs more press than it already has, but a glimpse at its produce selection last night yielded an amazingly awesome assortment of citrus fruits, many of which are rarely ever seen in New York City. Of course, they come with ridiculously high price tags, but just think: If you turn these babies into marmalade, you’ve got yourself a value-added product. Get ready for citrus maximus!
Perhaps better known as calamansi, the calamondin, as it’s called here, is a fruit used primarily in Southeast Asian cooking, notably in the Philippines. These orange beauties have a flavor that’s like a cross between lime and tangerine. Drink the juice straight up, or use the juice as a flavoring in salads or to marinade meats. Eight dollars per pound.
These etrog citrus fruits are usually only seen during the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, when they’re revered and stored in special boxes. There’s a lot of pith and so the best use for this would be to candy it, but it’s not widely eaten. Eight dollars each.
Intoxicatingly fragrant, Buddha’s hand is a citrus fruit whose fruit is segmented into knobby little fingerlike sections. Make this into marmalade. Or just put it on the table and admire its aroma and beauty. Nine dollars each.
So the flesh is actually green- and yellow-striped, but the fruit can be pinkish-hued. Apparently it’s a bit tarter than a regular lemon, but use it the same way you would a normal one: lemonade! Nine dollars a pound.
Having no idea what to do with finger limes (neither did the person manning the citrus station at Eataly), another source had to be consulted. The Los Angeles Times says that this native Australian fruit has vesicles (the little sacs of liquid) that pop in the mouth like caviar. Use the fruit sparingly as a garnish. Caviar ain’t cheap, and neither is citrus caviar: You’ll be paying $40 a pound for these puckers.
They may look like lemons, but these babies are limes through and through, only with less acid than their normal counterparts. Use in fruit salads or anywhere you’d normally use limes. And at $3 per pound, they’re actually affordable!
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 23, 2010