With its unmistakable tart flavour and floral aroma, yuzu has taken the culinary world by storm. Bright yellow yuzu may be lemon’s doppelganger, but that’s where the citrusy similarity ends. Yuzu is tough-skinned and has very little juice (it’s mostly pith and seeds), but simply zesting the aromatic rind will give you an endless amount of flavour. Despite its diminutive size (slightly smaller than a tangerine), yuzu has a remarkably bright and bold flavour. Take the sweetness of a mandarin orange, the sourness of a lemon and the tartness of a grapefruit and add in a final hint of lime and you’ll have the complex – and delightful flavour – of yuzu. At Calgary’s JinBar restaurant, for example, the Yuzu Soy Vinaigrette is what makes the Ahi Tuna Crudo shine.
We asked Chef Warren Barr of Pluvio Restaurant in Ucluelet, BC, to share how he uses yuzu in his inspired cuisine.
EG: Why do you like about yuzu?
Yuzu is an incredible aromatic citrus fruit, which has a very unique floral quality. Whilst the juice is delicious, there isn’t much within each fruit but the zest is also wonderful and can be used in so many different ways.
What is your favourite way to use it?
We make a yuzu marmalade, using the zest and juice. This process preserves the flavour and utilizes it’s best qualities. Yuzu marmalade lasts for a long time, allowing us to make the most of this seasonal fruit. We use it in cocktails, desserts, sauces and to glaze fish and poultry.
Have you developed a dish around the flavours of yuzu, or do you generally use yuzu as a tasting note within a recipe?
Our most recent application of yuzu is on a duck dish for our tasting menu. The duck was the star of the show, but the yuzu was a very prominent flavour that elevated the dish and worked well with the other ingredients.
Where do you source your yuzu from?
That’s a secret! We are thrilled to be able to source yuzu locally from Vancouver Island, but the quantities grown are so small we can’t share our secret. We have recently planted three yuzu trees and two kumquat trees in our rooftop garden and hope to have our own Ucluelet grown fruit in the next few years.
Taste the Yuzu trend:
Acid League’s Pink Peppercorn Honey Yuzu Vinaigrette
Add life to your salad with yuzu’s uniquely aromatic acidic kick.
This delicious sparkling yuzu juice is made in Japan with hand-picked Yuzu from Shikoku Island, water from the Hyogo region and organic sugar cane.
This ponzu, brewed at Daikō Shōyu, in Kinomoto, Japan is a bright accompaniment to your salad dressings and marinades, or as a dipping sauce for meats, fish and dumplings.
This made-in-Quebec cocktail mixer has a sweet and refreshing taste with aromas of yuzu and grapefruit.
Try this frozen natural yuzu purée in everything from smoothies to viniaigrettes. Imported directly from Japan.