How to Supreme Citrus

Techniques | November 8, 2016 | By

This is one of those techniques which fit into the “good to know” category.

Some recipes call for citrus fruit such as oranges or grapefruits, to be “supremed”. To “supreme” is just a fancy term for removing the skin and pith from the fruit and then cutting between the membranes of the fruit to create pretty skinless fruit segments.

So let’s supreme a grapefruit!

First, using a serrated vegetable knife, remove the skin from the top and bottom of the grapefruit. This will create a stable platform for the next step, removing the skin from the sides of the grapefruit.

Supreme Citrus

Now, sit the grapefruit on it’s bottom and run you knife in downward arcing strokes to remove the skin from the sides making sure to remove the white pith. Be sure to take only small sections of skin off at a time, otherwise you will remove too much of the flesh.

Supreme Citrus

So what is pith and why do you want to remove it? Pith is the white pulp-like layer between the skin and the flesh of a citrus fruit. When using peeled citrus in a recipe, you want to remove as much pith as possible, as it has a bitter taste that detracts from the flavor of the fruit.


Finally, cut the grapefruit into segments by holding the grapefruit in one hand and the vegetable knife in the other, carefully make cuts towards the center of the grapefruit either side of the membranes.


This technique can be used on most citrus fruit.