Citrus Fruit Cutting Guide: How to Cut Your Fruit Safely

By: The Hale Groves Team | On: | Category: Fruit Facts

There’s nothing like the taste of fresh citrus to brighten up a winter’s day! Whether you buy fruit baskets for your friends or you received orange gift baskets yourself this holiday season, you should keep in mind that there are many ways to enjoy Florida citrus in addition to eating it fresh out of hand – they’re great for adding to your favorite recipes, too.

Cutting up your holiday fruit gifts for use in various recipes may seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually quite easy. Read on to learn the best way to cut your Florida fruit for different types of dishes so they look and taste amazing.

Tip: No matter how you slice it, the key to slicing citrus fruit beautifully and safely is a very sharp knife – otherwise, you may wind up crushing your fruit instead of cutting it. Check to see if your knife needs honing before you start slicing!

Slicing Citrus Rounds for Garnishing Drinks or Layering Over/Under Main Dishes

  1. Take your Indian River citrus fruit gently but firmly in your non-dominant hand. Curl the fingers of that hand into a claw grip so that your knuckles extend beyond your fingertips (this helps keep your fingers safe from accidents).
  1. Starting at the heel of the fruit, pull back on the blade with a gentle downward pressure, maximizing the horizontal motion just enough to slide the blade through the fruit. The gentler you are, the more even your rounds will be.

Tip: Always use the “claw grip” when cutting fruits and vegetables to keep your fingers safe in case the knife slips.

Cutting Citrus Wedges for Adding to Drinks, Over Seafood, etc.

  1. Slice off each end of the fruit, taking off only enough so that the flesh is just barely exposed.
  1. Slice the fruit in half down the center.
  1. Put each half face down on your cutting board and slice in half crosswise
  1. Cut each slice in half twice more, dividing into a dozen even wedges.
  1. Using the tip of your knife, carefully pry out any seeds from inside and discard.

Tip: Keep your cutting board stable by putting a damp kitchen towel or a rubber mat underneath it to keep it from slipping.

Cutting Citrus Suprèmes/Segments for Use in Salads, Garnishes, Relish, Salsa, etc.

This method removes the bitter pith of your citrus fruit, which can adversely affect the taste of your dish. It also removes the membranes so they don’t get stuck in your teeth. Plus, it makes the presentation of your dish that much more attractive!

  1. Slice off each end of the fruit, taking off only enough so that the flesh is just barely exposed.
  1. Lay the fruit cut-side down on your cutting board, then then insert your blade into the space between the flesh and the skin at an angle that matches the contour of the fruit.
  1. Work your knife around with a gentle sawing motion, following the contour of the fruit and removing just enough skin to expose the flesh underneath. Keep working around the fruit, slicing off thin segments of the skin as you cut.
  1. Once you’ve removed all the hard skin, go back and use your knife to trim off any extra bits of pith that remain on the surface of the flesh.
  1. Holding the fruit in one hand, look for the thin strips of membrane that separate each segment. Insert your knife close to the inside of the membranes, cutting them through almost to the core.
  1. Move along to the other side of the wedge, and cut along the inside of the opposite membrane, again almost to the core.
  1. The slice should release with no pith or membrane attached.
  1. Continue working around the fruit, cutting along either side of each membrane, dropping the slices into a bowl as you work.
  1. If not using right away, squeeze the core over the segments before storing them in the refrigerator in a sealed container (storing them in their own juice helps keep them from drying out).

Tip: Keep the fruit your other food you’re cutting when slicing into smaller pieces by keeping the cut-side down on your cutting board.

Peeling Sliced Citrus Fruit for Salads

Peel the fruit with your knife as you would for suprèmes, but instead of cutting out wedges in between the membranes, slice the fruit crosswise. This is not as time-consuming as cutting suprèmes, but removes some of the pith and membrane.

Tip: Keep in mind that, while uncut citrus fruits can be stored in the refrigerator for two weeks or more, once they’re cut, they should be kept in a sealed container and consumed within five days.

Related Articles:

How to Cut a Mango
How to Cut a Peach
5 Facts About Navel Oranges That Might Surprise You
How to Can Fruit

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