Citrus Zest or Peel


+ enlarge image Shred the peel into small pieces faster by using a microplane.

Zest is appropriately named, as it adds flavor and life to all sorts of recipes. When used in cooking, the term refers to the intensely perfumed outermost colored layer of citrus peel (not the white pit, which is bitter). There are several ways to shred citrus peel. One is to finely grate the peel with a grater. Or, you can use a citrus zester, which has a stainless-steel edge with a series of cutting holes that strip off fine threadlike pieces of peel. Innovative cooks have put a woodworking tool called the microplane to use. A microplane allows you to shred tiny, uniform pieces of peel faster and with less pressure than a regular grater or citrus zester. It also can be used to create fine shreds of chocolate or fresh ginger.

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