The flavor of lime

This tart green citrus works magic, course after course
ANDREW BAKER

A squeeze of lime juice is vital to many classic dishes. It's the kick in a margarita, the spark that ignites many curries, and the tart foil to sweetness in a host of desserts. Conveniently, for such an indispensable ingredient, limes are available year-round. Most of those in Western markets are the Persian variety ― large, bright green, and highly acidic. They keep up to two weeks if you seal them with a sprinkle of water in a plastic bag and store them in the warmest part of your refrigerator.

We've flavored dishes for every course of the meal with this exquisitely mouth-puckering citrus. In some cases we've used a light hand, in others a generous one, but in each dish we've given the sour fruit some creamy or sweet ballast ― avocado, honey, sugar, or coconut milk.

Recipes:

Arizona Tortilla Soup

Ginger-Lime Beef Stir-fry

Lime Tarts with Coconut Cream