Exotic citrus

Rangpur limes and Yuzus shine in these fresh recipes

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Rangpur lime

  • Rangpur lime

    Flavor and aroma Fruity and bracingly sour, like a mix of tangerines and limesBack story Actually a hybrid acid mandarin, originally from Rangpur, in what is now Bangladesh. Cal Stamenov likes Rangpurs in drinks, desserts, and to “squeeze over anything.”Harvest season Everbearing and prolific, but heaviest in winter

Yuzu

  • Yuzu

    Flavor and aroma Like an exotic version of Meyer lemon, with a hint of pineBack story This hybrid between primitive Chinese Citrus ichangensis and sour mandarin (or possibly satsuma) grows wild in Tibet and central China, and is prized in Japanese and Korean cuisine. Stamenov uses yuzus to kick up the flavor of seafood and desserts.Harvest season Autumn to early winter

Plant your own citrus trees

Climate Like all citrus, Rangpur limes and yuzus thrive with warm to hot summers and mild winters (Sunset climate zones 8–9, 12–24 from the Sunset Western Garden Book; more info on sunset.com/climatezones). Yuzus are cold-hardy down into the teens, and Rangpurs can take cold into the mid-20s. Or try them indoors by a sunny window.

TLC Give citrus excellent drainage and regular applications of citrus food during the growing season. They’ll get cranky if you let the soil dry out or get soggy.

When Plant in full sun after danger of frost is past and before summer heat hits, in the ground or in large containers like half-barrels.

Sources If your local nursery doesn’t sell yuzus and Rangpur limes, buy them on-site or by mail from Menlo Growers (11605 New Ave., Gilroy, CA; 408/683-4862); call for current availability, sizes, and prices. Four Winds Growers (877/449-4637) sells dwarf trees by mail; two- to three-year-old trees cost $40, plus shipping (not available to Arizona).

 

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