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Celebrating citrus

Dawn Viola is a research and development chef and food writer. She serves on the board of directors for Slow Food Orlando, and works with local and national companies as a healthy recipe consultant with a focus on organic, local and sus...

Brighten winter days with citrus

Available year-round, lemons, and citrus, are at their peak in the winter months, brightening our tables as timeless centerpieces and adding a freshness to winter meals and recipes.

Winter lemonade

Best known as a source of vitamin C, citrus also delivers other essential nutrients, such as vitamin A and potassium, along with antioxidants to help support a healthy immune system. Most citrus fruits can be stored at room temperature for about a week or in the refrigerator for three to four weeks.

Winter lemonade recipe

Yields 8 (8 ounce) servings

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups fresh lemon juice (about 20 room temperature lemons)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 cups filtered or bottled spring water (without minerals)

Directions:

  1. Heat water and sugar in a saucepan over low heat, until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature, or place in the refrigerator to chill.
  2. While the sugar syrup is cooling, juice the lemons. Let lemons come to room temperature. Roll lemons on the counter or table with the palm of your hand with a bit of pressure to burst the juice cells within the lemon. This will yield more juice from your lemons and make easier work of juicing.
  3. Squeeze the lemons over a sieve to catch seeds, or juice directly into a bowl and then strain for pulp and seeds. Combine the sugar syrup and lemon juice in a 2-quart container and stir vigorously.
  4. Pour into glasses with plenty of ice and garnish with mint, sliced lemons or stems of bruised lemongrass and sugar cane.

Curried pork and citrus salad recipe in lettuce parcels

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cooked, diced pork tenderloin
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 lemon (zest and juice)
  • 1/2 cup red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint, minced
  • 1 cup fresh pink grapefruit wedges, diced
  • 4 broad lettuce leaves (iceberg, bibb)
  • Long chives or green onions, blanched, for tying parcels
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine pork, mayonnaise, sugar, curry powder, lemon zest, lemon juice, onion and mint. Stir to mix and distribute all flavors. Add salt and pepper to taste. Gently fold in grapefruit wedges.
  2. Divide mixture into four equal portions. Spoon mixture onto each piece of lettuce, without overstuffing. Fold the tops of the lettuce leaves over themselves and secure by tying them closed with a long chive stem or green onion.

Lemon shortbread bars recipe

Yields 12 bars

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 8 ounces salted butter, softened (16 tablespoons)
  • 1 cup organic sugar
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9 x 12-inch sheet pan or baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a standing mixer with paddle attachment, combine flour, butter, sugar, zest, juice and vanilla on low speed until flour is absorbed. Increase speed to medium-high; mix until a crumbly dough is formed. Gather dough into a smooth ball and press evenly into prepared pan. Score dough with a knife (without cutting all the way through) into squares or rectangles. Using the tines of a fork, pierce each section of shortbread three times.
  3. Place pan in oven. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove pan from oven. Using a knife, cut shortbread along score lines; set aside and allow to cool one hour. Once cooled and firm, break bars apart along the score lines and serve. To store, transfer shortbread to an airtight container up to seven days, or freeze up to one month.

More on citrus

Healthy California clementine recipes
Cuties clementines are available nationwide
Raw kale and grapefruit salad recipe

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