There’s a hot new citrus fruit in town, adding a much needed dose of vitamin C to your winter diet: yuzu.
We love cooking with yuzu because this Japanese superfood is all of your citrus dreams rolled into one golf-ball- sized package. It tastes like a cross between a grapefruit, lemon and mandarin, and is equally at home in sweet and savoury dishes. It’s zest and juice are used to flavour dressings, desserts, marinades and cocktails.
It’s been used for centuries in Japan and Korea (where it’s called yuja), celebrated for its potent antioxidants, supercharged levels of vitamin C, and anti-inflammatory properties. Combined with honey, it creates a winter-perfect syrup called yuzu hachimitsu, which is used to make a cold-busting yuzu tea.
In Melbourne, pay a visit to Wasshoi Bar & Grill in the Prahran Market. Here, chef Ikeui Arakane (Kinsan) uses Kochi Yuzu (Japanese yuzu juice) in everything from his zesty yuzu pepper mayonnaise to a yuzu-spiked beer shandy. At fine-dining restaurant Matteo’s in North Fitzroy, yuzu pops up in mayonnaises and dressings for the savoury courses, and a delicious yuzu citrus curd tart with kaffir lime meringue.
At the Star in Sydney, Sokyo’s menu is peppered with this aromatic citrus, in dishes such as Hokkaido scallop sashimi with yuzu honey, barramundi with yuzu miso, and a spectacular yuzu soufflé for dessert. In Surry Hills, cutting-edge ramen bar Salaryman gets creative with yuzu, serving chicken liver parfait with a sticky yuzu syrup, and dressing chargrilled octopus with yuzu and chilli.
You can use yuzu juice and zest as you would other citrus fruits. Substitute yuzu for the lemon and orange in this tangy soba noodle salad, or switch the lime for yuzu in the marinade for this teppanyaki fish dish.
To make a ponzu sauce for noodle dishes and salads, mix yuzu juice with light soy sauce, then use it to dress this beef tataki salad.
Stir a few drops of yuzu into Kewpie mayonnaise, then add to these Japanese salmon burgers or use as a dipping sauce for chilled prawns.
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