I’m known for throwing things together. You know those stories where someone tries to get a family recipe from a grandmother or great aunt, only to realize they throw things together without any measurements? That’s me. I also rarely repeat a recipe twice because I’m always interested in trying something new or trying a new ingredient. Or, because I don’t write things down (I really do mean to!), I simply forget the ingredients I used.
But, there are a few recipes that I do repeat over and over. They’re usually really easy to make and also the kind of dish that makes all of us—including the baby—say “wow, this is good!”
This is one of those recipes.
Using All the Citrus
The bright citrus marinade really does use all the citrus. It brightens up all of the dark, heavy flavors of fall and winter foods (which I love, but I do certainly need a break now and then). But it’s also wonderful during the summer when you can use it for the grill or even as a salad dressing to lift up all of the fresh produce.
On what can you use this bright citrus marinade? I used this a few weeks ago as a marinade for some elk (for elk tacos) my brother-in-law gave to us. But you can also use it on chicken, fish of all kinds, and pork. Red meat is not its perfect companion, but it did add a very nice flavor to the elk, and all of the citrus really helped to tenderize the tough cut. (Which is, after all, the whole point, but added flavor is always a bonus!)
The beautiful thing, too, is that you can change the type of citrus you use based on the season, what you’re cooking, and your tastes. You can use Meyer lemons during the late winter, or blood oranges, or yuzu, pomelos, grapefruit, or tangerines—it’s completely up to you! You can also change the ingredient amounts, like adjusting the amount of cilantro if you’re someone like me who doesn’t like it a lot, or if you love it!
And, a final note, to those of you like me who aren’t fans of cilantro: I promise, you’ll still really like this marinade! It adds just enough flavor, but without the strong cilantro taste.
Bright Citrus Marinade
- 1/4 Cup neutral oil, such as grapeseed or avocado
- 1/4 Cup freshly-squeezed orange juice
- 3 Tbsp. freshly-squeezed lime juice
- 3 Tbsp. freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. finally-chopped cilantro
- 2 tsp. Spanish (smoky) paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1. De-stem the cilantro and chop finely. You can include the stems if you would like extra flavor. 2. Juice the citrus. If you want more flavor, you can add a ¼ teaspoon of zest. 3. Whisk together the oil, the juice, cilantro, paprika, and salt and pepper. 4. Use to marinate your dish!
This bright citrus marinade is guaranteed to brighten up your dinner table (or lunch table, or breakfast table). And it’s so simple to make—five minutes, and it’s ready to go!