Unveiling the Exotic: Buddha's Hand Citrus Extraction for the Adventurous Home Cook

buddahs hand citrus in basket - Culinary Solvent

One of the most curious fruits of the citrus family is Buddha's Hand. Native to Northeastern India and China, this exotic citrus is known for its unique appearance and a zesty fragrance that can be utilized in a plethora of culinary applications, including a homemade citrus extract.

Understanding Buddha's Hand 

Also known as Citrus medica var. sarcodactylis, Buddha's Hand citrus is intriguing in many ways. This citrus fruit has an unusual appearance, segmented into long, slender sections reminiscent of fingers of a hand. The fingers can range from closed to loosely open, giving it an artistic silhouette.

The fruit's taste is purely zesty, as it lacks the juice and pulp we usually associate with citrus. Its aroma, however, is unparalleled—offering a bright, lemony scent with undertones of lavender and fresh green notes. This aroma is often leveraged in perfumery and aromatherapy, but it can also add an exciting new twist to food and beverages when extracted correctly.

Selecting Buddha's Hand for Citrus Extraction

When selecting Buddha's Hand for extraction, look for fruits that are bright yellow, indicating ripeness. The skin should feel firm and not appear shriveled. Additionally, a strong, fresh citrus fragrance is a good indicator of a healthy fruit. 

Buddha's Hand Citrus Extract Recipe

To make a Buddha's Hand extract, you will need the zest of one Buddha's Hand fruit and 2 fl oz of 200 proof food grade alcohol from Culinary Solvent.

  1. Carefully remove the zest from the Buddha's Hand with a microplane or vegetable peeler, ensuring you avoid the bitter pith.
  2. Place the zest in a clean, air-tight glass jar.
  3. Pour the Culinary Solvent over the zest, ensuring it's fully submerged.
  4. Seal the jar and store it in a cool, dark place for about two weeks. Shake it occasionally to mix the zest and solvent.
  5. After two weeks, strain the mixture through a cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve. The liquid you're left with is your homemade Buddha's Hand extract!

Storing Your Finished Buddha's Hand Extract 

Store your homemade extract in a dark glass container to protect it from light, which can degrade it over time. A cool, dry place like a pantry or cupboard is ideal. Your extract should last up to two years if stored correctly, allowing you to savor this unique citrus flavor in your culinary adventures for months to come.

The exotic Buddha's Hand offers home cooks and chefs an opportunity to explore an entirely different facet of citrus flavor. Its intoxicating aroma and unique zest can transform ordinary dishes into extraordinary culinary masterpieces. Happy extracting!

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