The citron is a citrus fruit belonging to the category of "originals", and specifically represents the third species that gave rise to hybrids such as bergamot and "wrinkled" lemon. Belonging to a very old species, it would appear that the citron originated in Asia and was brought to Italy around III century BC by the Persian peoples.
The fruit of the citron is round and it is larger than an orange in size, but this depends on its variety. The citron peel is bright yellow in color, and slightly lighter than that of the lemon. The outside appears to be wrinkled or smooth, and its skin is very thick. The pulp accounts for about 25% of the fruit and is acidulous in flavor, slightly bitter.
Because of its particular flavor, the citron is perfect both for making sweet juice as well as being paired with savory dishes.
The citron has a number of segments that can vary from a minimum of 5 to a maximum of 12. Very few seeds are found inside.
Cultural and religious meaning
The citron is a citrus fruit with multiple spiritual meanings, and it is a characteristic symbol of the Jewish religion. The citron is the emblem of the ritual Sukkot thanksgiving feast that in ancient times lasted up to 7 days, during which the Almighty was given thanks for fertility and plant growth. The citron is also the symbol of Jewish resistance in the forty years spent in the desert. The citron has had such a widely spread influence, like none other in a religious context.
The production of candied peel is famous thanks to its particularly consistent peel. Its aromas of citrus also make it perfect for the extraction of essential oils used in cosmetics.