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Old 06-10-2009, 01:20 PM   #1
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Default Bitter Orange Peel

I'm planning a witbier and I'm getting mixed reviews on the bitter orange peel that is sold by LHBS Some say that it's OK and others say don't use it. What is your experience with it?

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Old 06-10-2009, 01:24 PM   #2
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I use it. Comes in a resealable pouch - worked fine in my blanche du chambly clone.

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Old 06-10-2009, 01:57 PM   #3
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I just brewed a witbier a few days ago using the peels from LHBS. It's the second batch I've brewed, the first was excellent.

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Old 06-10-2009, 05:24 PM   #4
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Randy Mosher recommends against using the ones from your LHBS. I used blood orange and grapefruit zest in my wit instead, and it turned out great!

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Old 06-10-2009, 05:30 PM   #5
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Despite their greenish-grey cardboard looking appearance, the bitter orange peel from the LHBS is a critical ingredient in a world-class, traditional Witbier. I love Witbier.

To clarify a few points:

(1) the bitter orange does not provide orange flavor or aroma. It is there to bitter, as Witbiers have very little by way of hops.
(2) The citrus notes in a Wit come from the coriander
(3) The herbal notes come from the peel.

Invariably, recipes that use fresh zest in lieu of the bitter peel call for an addition of chamomile to replace the missing herbal notes.

How's that for a mind-bender?

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Old 06-10-2009, 05:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyangler18 View Post
Despite their greenish-grey cardboard looking appearance, the bitter orange peel from the LHBS is a critical ingredient in a world-class, traditional Witbier. I love Witbier.

To clarify a few points:

(1) the bitter orange does not provide orange flavor or aroma. It is there to bitter, as Witbiers have very little by way of hops.
(2) The citrus notes in a Wit come from the coriander
(3) The herbal notes come from the peel.

Invariably, recipes that use fresh zest in lieu of the bitter peel call for an addition of chamomile to replace the missing herbal notes.

How's that for a mind-bender?
I should probably clarify that I have never tried using dried orange peel from my LHBS, since I've only made one wit. I love drinking wits, though... :-)

About your second point, I felt like I understood wit better when I tasted the difference between supermarket coriander and coriander from India. The one from India (with an oblong shape) seemed to have a lot more citrus character and a more complex flavor than the one I had from my local supermarket.
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Old 06-10-2009, 05:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
About your second point, I felt like I understood wit better when I tasted the difference between supermarket coriander and coriander from India. The one from India (with an oblong shape) seemed to have a lot more citrus character and a more complex flavor than the one I had from my local supermarket.
Absolutely! The Indian coriander is superb stuff, and the only kind that goes into my Witbier.
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Old 06-10-2009, 07:05 PM   #8
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flyangler 18 Thanks for clearing up the mystery of the bitter orange...I now understand I'm considering an addition of orange marmalade, the good stuff that I picked up at a whole foods market.

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