Food Guts - Ingredient Information

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Citron on Wikipedia:

Citron Scientific classification Kingdom: Plantae (unranked): Angiosperms (unranked): Eudicots (unranked): Rosids Order: Sapindales Family: Rutaceae Genus: Citrus Species: C. medica Binomial name Citrus medica L. For other uses, see Citron (disambiguation).

The citron is a fragrant fruit with the botanical name Citrus medica, which applies to both the Swingle and Tanaka systems. It is a prominent member in the genus Citrus, belonging to the Rutaceae or Rue family, sub-family Aurantioideae. The designation medica is apparently derived from the similar ancient names Media, Median Apple etc., which were influenced by Theophrastus, who believed the citron was native to Media, Persia or Assyria.

The citron has many similar names in diverse languages, e.g. cederat, cedro, etc. Most confusing are the Polish, Czech, Slovak, French, Dutch, German, Yiddish and Scandinavian languages, in which the false friend ``citron`` refers to the fruit called lemon in English. The French name for citron is ``cédrat``.


// Main Article: Succade; Main Article: Etrog (ritual)

The citron is unlike the more common citrus species like the lemon or orange. While the most popular fruits are peeled in order to consume their pulpy and juicy segments, the citron's pulp is very dry containing only little insipid juice. Moreover, the main content of a citron is the thick white rind, which is very adherent to the segments, and cannot be separated from them easily.

Thus, from ancient through medieval times, the citron was used mainly for medical purposes: to combat against seasickness, pulmonary troubles, intestinal ailments, and other disorders. The essential oil of the flavedo (the outermost, pigmented layer of rind) was also regarded as an antibiotic[1]. Citron juice with honey was considered an effective antidote to poison.

Today, the citron is used for the fragrance or zest of its outer peel (flavedo), but the most important part is still the inner rind (known as pith or albedo), which is a fairly important article in international trade, and is widely employed in the food industry as succade[2] as it is known when it is candied in sugar. Today there is a rising market for the citron in the United States for the soluble fiber in its thick albedo.[3]

The citron is also used by Jews (the word for it in Hebrew is Etrog) for a religious ritual during the Feast of Tabernacles. Therefore the citron was always considered as a Jewish symbol, and is found on various Hebrew antiques and archeological findings.[4] In Swedish the citron is named Suckatcitron, - the citron of Succoth[dubious – discuss]. In Iran, the citron's thick white rind is used to make jam. In South Indian cuisine, especially Tamil cuisine, citron is widely used in pickles and preserves. In Tamil, the unripe fruit is referred to as 'narthangai', which is usually salted and dried to make a preserve. The tender leaves of the plant are often used in conjunction with chili powder and other spices to make a powder, called 'narthellai podi', literally translating to 'powder of citron leaves'. Both narthangai and narthellai podi are usually consumed with thayir sadam.

In Korea, it is used to create Yujacha, a type of Korean tea. The fruit is thinly sliced (peel, pith and pulp) and soaked or cooked in honey or sugar to create a chunky syrup. This syrupy candied fruit is mixed with hot water as a fragrant tea, where the fruit at the bottom of the cup is eaten as well. Often preserved in the syrup for the cold months, Yujacha is served as a source of fruit in winter. It is also popular in Taiwan and Japan where it is known by its Chinese/Japanese name 柚子茶 (Pinyin: Youzi cha, Japanese: yuzucha).

Description and Variation

Citron varieties

Acidic-pulp varieties: Diamante citron Greek citron Balady citron Florentine citron
Non-acidic varieties: Moroccan citron Corsican citron
Pulpless varieties: