How to Supreme an Orange

Citrus fruits are a summertime staple from fresh squeezed lemonade to fruit salad at a picnicon the beach.Oranges are one of my favoritesnacks during the hot summer months. They’regreat by themselves, but you can add them to any dish for an extra pop of sweetness (and color). Most people who cook with oranges only usethe juice, butI find that one of the best ways to add some texture and orange flavor (and use more than just the juice) is to cut orange supremes. Orange supremes areorange segments withoutthepeel, seeds ormembranes.This technique can be done on any citrus fruit (grapefruit, blood oranges, limes, etc.) and is easyto master.

You’ll need the following:

  • Orange (or anycitrus fruit)
  • Chef Knife
  • Paring Knife
  • Cutting board

1.) Place the orange on a cutting board. Becauseoranges can bevery juicy,you might want some paper towels handy to wipe your hands as you work.

2.) Turn your orange on its side and cut the top off. I like to make my cut about a 1/4 inch from the very top of the orange.

After your cut, you shouldsee all of the segments of the orange. If you look at my picture below you’llnotice that I had to make a second cut to make all of the segments visible. You mayneed to make more than one cut to expose all of the segmentssince no two oranges are the same.

3.) Turn the orange on its side and repeat the previous step on the other end of the orange.

Once again, you might have to make a second cut to see all the segments like the picture below.

4.) Nowit’stime to remove the peel. For this we’ll need our chef knife (you can use a paring knife for this step if you’renot comfortable with using a chef knife). Put your orange on the cutting board on one of the trimmed ends. Place your knifeon the edge where the rind meets the orange segments.

5.) Slowly trim the peel off by moving your knife in a sawing motion and very lightly push your knife down. As you work your knife down, follow the contour of the orange.

6.) Repeat Step 5 until you have completely removed all of the peel from the orange.

You’llnotice in the picture below that I have completely removed all of the peel, including all of the white part. The white part of the peel on any citrus fruit iswhat often makes it taste bitter. You might have to go back and clean up your orangeusing your paring knife to ensure as much white as possible is gone.

7.) We’ll now remove the segments from the membrane of the orange. Place the orange in your non-dominant hand. You’ll notice white lines on the orange –in between theselines are the segments that we want to remove. With your paring knife in your other hand, make a cut just on the inside of one of the lines. This takes very little pressure, so be sure not to pushtoo hard oryou’ll run the risk of cutting yourself.

8.) Make a cut on the other side of the segment with your paring knife. Cut just on the inside of the other white line of the segment. Again, this takes very little pressure so be sure not to cut too hard.

9.) Once you’vemade your second cut you should be able to remove the segment very easily. You should now have a nice orange segment like the one picturedbelow.

10.) Repeat Steps 8 and 9 until you’vemade your way through the whole orange. Again it only takeslittle pressure to cut through the orange so be very careful making your cuts.

11.) Once you’re done,you should have quite a few orange segments that are ready to go into your dishes or just eat on theirown.

In closing, remember that once you learn how to supreme an orange, you can supreme any citrus fruit.

Alla Cucina – To the Kitchen

Chef

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