To juice a lime…with ease, you’ll need the greenest, smoothest-skinned, most fragrant limes. Ever. Well…..even yellowing, gnarled limes would work. Moving on. You’ll need a sharp knife and thus your wits about you. And a beautiful handheld citrus press, or you could be here all night. Don’t forget you’ll need a cup too, a receptacle to catch the juice. For isn’t that the very point of this tutorial? The juice. Which once done is set aside for a lime marmalade and a recipe that will follow. But first, how to juice a lime. Without even thinking, you know that limes (of all the common citruses) are the most difficult to juice. Small and fiddly, they sometimes escape even the most deft of hands. Well, difficult to juice….if you haven’t got a citrus press. I have always been a fan of every and anything that helps me extract zest and juice from citrus. Be it microplane, skin shredder or hand-held press. This evening, tired (indeed, very tired) from a long journey, I juiced 20 limes in a few minutes. And got a (scant) cup of juice. With not a drop of sweat. The citrus press is an interesting tool, composed of two long handles with a well and a dome, held by a hinge at one end with the top which nestles into the base. The well is perforated, with holes big enough to let the juice out, but small enough to trap most of the seeds from your juiced citrus. When I first bought it, I knew exactly how to use it. It needed no manual. Or so I thought. I cut the fruit, placed one half cut-side up (it fits better this way) and juiced away. Right, I thought. Wrong, it was. I can’t remember where or when I saw someone use it right way….placing the fruit half, cut-side down…..(counterintuitive as it is), to prevent juice from getting squirted into wide open eyes. To stop the juice from running down the sides of the tool, instead of out the holes at the bottom. In short, to extract the most juice. There are different sizes of citrus presses, for oranges, lemons and limes. I have a lemon one which I use for both lemons and limes. Step 1: Cut the fruit in half, across its equator. Set out a cup, bowl or receptacle to catch the juice. Step 2: Place one half of the lime, cut-side down in the well of the press. Set this over your ‘receptacle’. In my case, Daughter number two’s Little Miss Sunshine mug. Step 3: Extract the juice by pressing the handles together. The citrus halves will flatten, and will be turned inside out. Step 4: Press again and turn sideways to extract as much juice as possible. Because the limes are smaller than the press, I do a second round of pressing with 2, 3 or 4 halves. Store/ use the juice as directed. Do what you will with the juiceless halves. Like
- add to water. Voila – lime water for a refreshing and healthy drink.
- soak in cold water then follow any instructions you can find to make the best lime marmalade ever. Coming soon.
- clean your counters and sink with the halves – sweet, smelling kitchen scents.