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Best Way to Zest a Lime or Lemon

I always seem to avoid dishes that require zest of lemon or lime because it seems arduous to me - and I have difficulty getting only the colored portion. But I have recently started making a key lime pie (aka Mexican lime pie) which is so easy and everyone loves it. So -- any suggestions for the most efficient way to zest a lime? I will be in NY for Thanksgiving and will have my semi-annual chance to shop for kitchen tools. Thanks.

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  1. Microplane. Nothing else even comes close.

    1. Use a microplane. If you're shopping for kitchen tools, buy two of them (for those times when one is in the dishwasher). Lightly rasp the microplane on the citrus and you'll get very fine ribbons of zest with no pith. I often don't even chop the zest anylonger.

      1. Absolutely a microplane. I also use it for grating cloves of garlic, rather than mincing with a knife, and also for grating ginger!

        1. I third the Microplane. You will no longer be intimidated by zest if you invest in this simple tool! Trust us!

          1. 5 out of 5 chowhounds recommend microplanes for zesting!

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