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So, we bought a YUZU tree...now what?

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This weekend we bought a YUZU tree at a Japanese nursery in the Los Angeles area: San Gabriel Nursery in San Gabriel. We were quite surprised that they had several trees available. I had posted several weeks ago that we had a YUZU juice at a local sushi bar that was amazingly delicious. I have never seen the fruit in any markets, so, next best was to buy the tree!

But now what do we do with the harvest? You can respond slowly...you have about 5 years! Actually, there are some small fruits on the tree already.

Does anyone know when to harvest? We believe that the green fruits -- about baseball size -- are better than waiting until they turn yellow. But once we have the fruit in the kitchen, what do we do with it? Has anyone had any experience here?

I anxiously await your replies!

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  1. CONGRATS!! :) I am guessing you are asking about the fruit. Well the fruit itself is pretty sour, but the rind/zest very flavorful. Basically use it as you would any citrus. I've had Yuzu drinks, Yuzu Tarts, Yuzu marinades/dressings. You can have lots of fun with it, I found it more vesatile than the Kumquat Tree my parents planted (and more fruitful... the kumquats grow too few!!)

    Oh! It's also seedy... This thread maybe helpful when the fruit grows! :)

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

    As for the tree itself, you are in L.A. Plant it in the ground and wait for the fruit. Pretty much everything thrives in this soil! :

    )

    --Dommy!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Dommy

      (I am very confused and not sure if it is "PC" on this board to thank you for your great info here. So....I'll risk it because it's Sunday night and no one is reading this -- thanks, Dommy!)

      I am glad to hear that you, too, recommend the rind rather than the fruit; this is consistent with what I am hearing. Also, we do have those cast iron squeeeeeezers that you referred to me; they are pretty good.

      Yes, citrus do very well around here, and you have given me lots of ideas if we get a good crop.

      1. re: liu

        While you're waiting for your tree to bear fruit, go to Mako on S. Beverly Drive in B.H. and have the yuzu meringue tart. It's fabulous, and I'm not normally someone who gravitates to puckery desserts.

        1. re: Debbie W

          Yes, this is pretty intriguing to me: yuzu tarts. Dommy's post just above yours mentioned tarts as well. I just never thought about this. Is it similar to a key lime pie slice?

          1. re: liu

            Well, at Mako it's an individual tart, not a slice of a bigger piece of pastry. Crust (not graham cracker but not sure exactly what, been awhile), creamy yuzu filling, kind of a dense, sweet meringue on top, browned with a blowtorch. As to taste comparisons, I think I've only ever had key lime pie once, as normally I don't gravitate toward lemony or lime-y desserts, so I'm not the person to compare the two, sorry.

    2. The tart sounds amazing. Another yuzu yummy.....if you haven't already tried.....Yuzu Buttermilk Sorbet at Boule on La Cienega, between Beverly and Melrose. Light, tart and refreshing.....perfect after a nice meal or just on a hot day. They have other amazing stuff as well all made in house. So, if you haven't stepped foot in this little gem.....I highly recommend it. Same owners as Sona Restaurant, just across the street.

      1 Reply
      1. re: boodle1977

        Boodle -- Yuzu Buttermilk Sorbet...oh, wow! Yes, I have been to Boule, and now I'll just have to force myself to go AGAIN...life can be tough! Thanks!

      2. Yuzu is fairly expensive fresh so most places use prepared paste or bottled juice. Any time I've had it fresh the sushi chef made a show of using it, much the same way they show off fresh wasabi.

        Ideas:

        Rind grated on sashimi
        1/4 fruit squeezed into aromatic soup, like matsutake
        Yuzu curd tart, prepared in a similiar fashion to lemon/lime curd
        In place of lemon or lime juice/zest

        1. JudiAU, I really do appreciate the several suggestions you have listed. There are a few fruits on the tree, so I will be thinking about you soon!

          We were also successful in growing fresh wasabi. It took about 18 months until harvest, but it was well worthwhile!