Everything Citrus

Our citrus trees are in full production and we use all the citrus in Kitchen in the Grove. Endless uses for our fruit; marmalade, candied fruit, soups and flavorings, and plenty of eating. There is a lot of citrus on our tasting plates in the Visitor Center these days. Citrus represents a major component of the flavor profile for this month.


 We are featuring citrus co-milled oils, lime, lemon, mandarin. We even made a kaffir lime oil this year.

We are serving Citrus Mostarda’s as a Chefs Sampler in the Kitchen.

Making Co-Milled Oils

Co-milling means we mill olives and citrus together. It all goes through the entire process simultaneously, from cutting, washing, grinding, malaxing and passing through the centrifuge all at the same time.  The result is beautiful co-milled award winning oils. The balance differs each year depending on the variety of olive, the maturity and the sweetness of the citrus fruit.

The Origin of Citrus Fruit

A DNA study published in Nature in 2018 concludes that citrus trees originated in the foothills of the Himalayas, in the area of Assam (India), western Yunnan (China), and northern Myanmar.

The three original species in the citrus genus that have been hybridized into most modern commercial citrus fruit are the mandarin orange, pomelo, and citron Within the last few thousand years, all common citrus fruits (sweet oranges, lemons, grapefruit, limes, and so on) were created by crossing those original species.

Most citrus comes from China. Some of the new DNA studies are able to locate their origins. Some researchers believed that it had originated in Australia, New Guinea, New Caledonia and then made its way to the US via of China. It is also thought that citrus has been cultivated for over 4000 years.

And I thought that olives were old!

Here is a fun recipe for spicing up winter meals

Whole Lemon Dressing

“When life gives you lemons make a great dressing”

1 organic Meyer or Eureka lemon

3/4 cup Athena’s Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 teaspoon sea salt, Maldon

1 teaspoon cracked black pepper, Tellecherry


Cut the lemon into 4-6 pieces

Place in blender

Slowly add the olive oil while the blender is running

Add the spices, as you desire, just before the dressing is finished

Blend until just smooth

Use immediately or refrigerate for only a day


Optional ingredients:

Fresh herbs:  thyme, parsley, cilantro, tarragon, oregano or even cooked asparagus

Sweetener: honey to balance the tartness of the lemons

Fresh or roasted garlic

Anchovies, My personal favorite

IL Fiorello Spicy Lavender Mustard

Chef’s Note:

Meyer lemons are sweeter, Eureka Lemons are more tart and brilliant tasting

Try both and compare the taste

Serving Suggestions

Salads, Fish, Roast Pork, all vegetables