Citrons and More New Hobbies

It’s that time of year when all of our citrus gets ripe! We have a huge crop of grapefruit, some lemons, and an astounding number of citrons. This is going to be the year that we actually use all of this stuff that grows like crazy in our yard.

Lemons are easy to use, and we have a plan for the grapefruit (like, 30 gallons of grapefruit wine!), but citrons are a little more tricky.

Before I go any further, let me tell you about the Citron. Citrons are mellon-sized citrus fruits that smell like lemons, are lumpy, and have very little pulp or juice. The rind of citrons is candied and used in fruitcakes.

In previous years, we’ve tried to make juice from the citrons, we’ve tried using them as decorations around the house, and we’ve tried just eating them. Last year, we gave some of them to a friend and she made lemoncello (or citroncello) from them (it was very tasty too). This year, however, I got it into my head to actually learn the traditional ways of using citron.

I started a new web site for the purpose of recording what I learn about citrons, canning, and candying, but I’m going to try to move everything over here.

So, stay tuned for more citrus ideas and info!


  1. shirley Shriver says:

    Hello, We do not find the Citron fruit in our area. Is the fresh Citron fruit available for shipping from area it is grown to other states as we have not found it fresh in grocery stores here. thank you

  2. chris says:

    Hi Shirley,

    We don’t see citron fruit in grocery stores in our area either. I don’t think I would have ever seen one if we didn’t have a huge tree in our yard. Where do you live and what are you planning to do with the fruit? I could probably ship you a couple if you pay for shipping.

  3. Gin says:


    You are so funny with this citron website!! I’ll be calling you to arrange for my pick-up of citrons. I plan to make a little more limoncello and try making candied citron (for German lepkuchen).

    This weekend we enjoyed the limoncello made from your citrons – straight from the freezer – a lucious way to end the evening. If you’re reading this, take Chris and Margaret’s offer for the free citrons as limoncello is very easy to make. If you start now, you’ll have a generous amount to enjoy during the sweltering Sacramento summer evenings.

    Start with two 750 ml of good quality vodka (helps prevent headaches) and pour into one or two airtight glass containers. Try to peel as much zest (outside colored part) from 5-7 washed and dried citrons and add to the vodka. Steep for a couple of months. Create a simple sugar syrup by dissolving 4 1/2 cups each of granulated sugar and water, heat on stove until almost boiling and sugar is dissolved. Strain zest from vodka and add cooled syrup. Let concoction steep for 4-6 more weeks. Pour into smaller containers, leaving some headspace, and stick them in your freezer. Don’t tell too many people they’re in there or you won’t have much left for you!

  4. chris says:

    Thanks Gin!

    Yes, call me and I’ll give you all the Citrons you want. We started making a little limoncello from our lemons, and I’m planning to do the citroncello this weekend. We’re using everclear…it’ll be interesting to see how different it is from the stuff you make with vodka.

    We’re also doing 30 gallons of grapefruit wine this year! That’s fermenting nicely, but slowly because of the cold weather.

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