July 8, 2012
The zest of a citrus is the very outer portion of the fruit. Zesting is the action of procuring the zest from said fruit. Orange zest comes from well, oranges.
Specialized tools exist to remove the zest from citruses, but a fork or grater will do. Just be sure not to scratch too deeply; the zest is full of essential oils, but the pith below is bitter only.
Orange zest owes most of its flavor to limonene. Limonene is an aromatic compound present in the oil of all citrus fruits. Orange oil differs only by under ten percent from other citrus oils, and the exact composition varies by season. The presence of sinensetin explains the orange color.
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