Hey there, little buddies! Even though we limes may be small, don't underestimate us because we bring big flavour and lots of goodness! Us limes, belong to the citrus family, just like lemons, mandarins, and grapefruits. We're all related!
Now, let's talk about our amazing features. First, we have a super fragrant smell that will make you go "Mmm!" And our taste? It's tangy and citrusy, but not as tart as our lemon cousins. So, you get that wonderful zing without puckering up your face too much!
But guess what? We're not just tasty, we're healthy too! Inside our small green bodies, we're packed with awesome stuff like vitamin C, antioxidants, and other nutrients. These little powerhouses can give your immune system a boost, helping you stay strong and healthy.
We're thin-skinned, glossy-green to yellow, with juicy green flesh. Round to egg-shaped, about 5cm long, we have a small point at one end.
Our peak season is from January to April but can be harder to find and therefore more expensive from June to August.
We’re not sold by variety in Australia the main variety however is a variety call Tahitian lime.
West Indian lime, also called Mexican or Key lime
We're a round to oval lime, yellow in colour, with a tart flavour and distinct smell. We prefer to grow in a hotter climate than other limes.
If you look at us, you'll notice that we have thin, green skin. But as we ripen and get ready to be eaten, our skin starts turning yellow. It's like a little colour change to show that we're getting sweeter and juicier!
When you cut us open, you'll find our flesh is a lovely green colour and really juicy. The best part is, we don't have any seeds! So, when you enjoy our delicious lime juice or use our zest for cooking, you don't have to worry about any pesky seeds getting in the way.
Our parent tree is smaller (2.5-4.5 metres) and more attractive than the lemon. It is an evergreen with dense, glossy pale green to dark green leaves and white fragrant flowers. The fruit from the trees are picked when plump and mature. We are harvested by hand so that damage is minimised.
Select those of us that are glossy green and feel heavy for our size.
We're sold ripe and ready to use. Store us in a fruit bowl on your kitchen bench. Use within 7 days. Keep us in your fridge for longer storage.
We, the Persian or Tahitian lime, have an obscure origin possibly coming from the Orient by way of Persia and the Mediterranean to Australia, South America and California in the US. We have been grown in Australia since early 1824.
Our cousin, the West Indian lime, sometimes called the true lime, originated in the Malaysian region of southwest Asia. It has been cultivated in all areas where the climate is suitable.
As I mentioned earlier, scurvy, caused by the lack of vitamin C, was the curse of long-sea voyagers because it caused severe illness. The lack of fresh fruit and vegetables in the diet caused the problem and Captain Cook is said to have been the first to overcome scurvy at sea by always having limes available.
Lime trees were obtained from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, by the First Fleet on their way to Australia. It's assumed they were planted with the other citrus trees when the colonists arrived at Sydney Cove in 1788.
We're similar to lemons and can often be used in recipes for each other. Lime adds a fresh pop of flavour to a range of foods.
To get the most juice from us, firmly roll the lime on your kitchen bench to warm it up a little, then cut in half and juice it.
Brush your cut apples and avocado with lime juice to prevent them from browning.
Lime juice is great in salad dressings and marinades.
Lime teams well with tropical fruits, chicken, seafood and pork.
Lime juice is used a lot in Mexican and Asian cooking. Add lime to guacamole and avocado smash, tacos, tortillas and stir-fries.
To make lime zest, use a fine grater to grate the skin. Add lime zest to Asian-style salad dressings and cake mixtures.
Try these great recipes from Sydney Markets that use fresh lime;