Buddha’s Hand Citron Vodka

by on December 16, 2008

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You really need to get your hands on one of these, no pun intended.

Behold, one of the most intriguing, beautiful and aromatic citrus of the world – The buddha’s hand citron or fingered citron.  Most of you probably already know of this squid looking, rind tentacled fruit. For those of you who don’t, it’s hard to believe that it’s even a citrus fruit at all. Doesn’t it look like a multi -fingered hand?

This buddha’s hand is one of the oldest citrus in the world and oddly enough, has no juice or pulp. The citron family of citrus fruits normally have very little juice and the buddha’s hand is part of this unique category of citrus.  What citrons lack in juice, their rinds make up in powerful fragrance. They’re superbly aromatic with concentrated lemon citrus smells.

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Buddha’s hand smells F.A.B.U.L.O.U.S!

The zest alone can perfume a room with a bright, beautiful, clean scent. For food, the buddha’s hand rind can give the same citrus nuances to enhance sauces or dressings. Because of the lack of fruit pulp, the  powerful citrus flavors of the buddhas hand citron are wonderful in tea’s and other dishes that benefit from infused rinds.

There’s 5 beautiful buddha’s hands that we have to play with and we’ve got some goodies lined up to share. But today, appropriate enough, we’re investing one of these amazing buddha’s hand citrons in a vodka. How could we not? Infusing this powerful scented buddha’s hand citron in some vodka means there’s going to be some great cocktail recipes in our near future.

Buddha’s hand citron vodka is so easy to make, there really isn’t much of a recipe. Infuse the rinds in vodka for about 30 days and have fun with some fantastic cocktails!

1. Start with a buddha’s hand. Clean as best as possible from dirt.

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2. Slice “fingers” lengthwise and wash again to remove dirt.

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3. Remove as much white pith as possible, leaving fragrant rind…

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…separate white pith from rinds. Discard the piths.

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4. Insert rinds into clean bottle or jar. Fill with vodka. Infuse for about 30 days.

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Oh yeah, us just messing around…

….bwahhhh!!!….

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….eeeek!!!!……

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We’ll return in about 30 days for some new cocktails made from this citron vodka!!


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{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Marvin December 16, 2008 at 4:57 pm

I’ve only read about buddha’s hand before, never actually seen it. Did you grow them yourselves in your world-famous garden? Can’t wait to see what else you do with them.

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2 Rita December 16, 2008 at 5:42 pm

I never saw this before, but the photos of you guys are really funny!

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3 Hélène December 16, 2008 at 5:21 pm

Never heard of buddha’s hand. Looks so cool. Don’t know where I would find this.

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4 Manggy December 16, 2008 at 7:46 pm

Oh, that is awesome. I’ve never seen or heard of it before. You gotta love those screwy cultivators! (Though I’m trying to wrap my head around how it can be one of the oldest citrus fruits.) Iz creepy but cool.

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5 Kitt December 16, 2008 at 7:24 pm

Awesome! And silly. :-)

I first encountered Buddha’s hand at Berkeley Bowl. I guess you can also eat the rind, like a kumquat? Are there seeds in it at all?

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6 Melissa December 16, 2008 at 9:08 pm

I don’t need to be drinking any more vodka, so I wouldn’t use it for that, but thank you for the education. I kept seeing these and at the same time kept forgetting to look them up to learn what to do with them.

I’ll pick one up!

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7 sharon December 16, 2008 at 10:13 pm

I’ve seen a lot of things, but never Buddha’s hand! The vodka looks so scary yet so tasty at the same time. Yum! You guys should make that picture your Christmas card :)

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8 Heather December 16, 2008 at 9:19 pm

i got my hand on buddha’s hand a few months ago and really adored it!! it’s so photogenic, huh? i love the scary pics of you and the hubs! and i love the infused vodka! you know i’m all about a cocktail!

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9 Chez Us December 16, 2008 at 10:48 pm

I saw some of these at the store the other day and wondered what I could do with them as the looked so intriguing! This would be a great holiday gift – another wonderful idea to add to my make the holidays jolly list for next year!!! Can’t wait to read about your cocktails!

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10 Marie December 17, 2008 at 12:26 am

I totally forgot about this crazy Buddha’s hand, but I know I’ve seen it somewhere before… the knowledge was lying dormant somewhere in my mind! Although I’ve never tried it, it sounds very refreshing and perfect for cocktails. Look forward to the drink recipes to come!

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11 Passionate Eater December 17, 2008 at 2:01 am

Yikes! I love tropical fruits because although they look unfamiliar (and oftentimes “scary” to Westerners), they are wonderfully fragrant and amazingly delicious.

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12 Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary December 17, 2008 at 4:18 am

Wow cool I saw that on a site but had no clue what it was!

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13 sue bette December 17, 2008 at 4:20 am

When I was bartending in Oakland we carried a Buddha’s Hand flavored vodka by Hangar One – really great small batch stuff – so if you are in a bind and don’t want to infuse it might be a good option http://tinyurl.com/5sx2xs
Love the pictures!

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14 Happy Cook December 17, 2008 at 6:50 am

Wow i have heard about this, but never have seen one in the shops.

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15 Sean December 17, 2008 at 8:01 am

We’ve got some infusing now for a buddhacello. Also, I recently had some thinly shaved in a salad at Incanto. Delicious!

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16 The Purplefoodie December 17, 2008 at 10:41 am

Wow this is something I’e never seen before. Looks weird but stunning. I was thinking that this would be great for candy too!

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17 Ursula December 17, 2008 at 9:56 am

stunning, I love it!

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18 Jen Yu December 17, 2008 at 10:03 am

Ah hah ha hah!! you guys are so funny. I love those pics. I have seen the BH around in stores, but never tried one and never ever saw what they look like on the inside! I will have to grab one and try candying the peels. Would that be good? hrmmmm. xxoo

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19 anna December 17, 2008 at 11:48 am

That’s a great idea! I saw those in the grocery store one day and had to look it up once I got home. It wasn’t worth the price here (definitely not a citrus-growing region) but I’m excited to see what you can do with them!

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20 Yaelian December 17, 2008 at 12:54 pm

What an interesting looking lemon, never heard of it before. That vodka sounds really nice :-)

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21 matt wright December 17, 2008 at 3:31 pm

Never heard of it. Never seen it. Want it badly. That pretty much sums it up!!
Now I have to wait 30 days to hear about what it tastes like infused into Vodka!!! you know how impatient I am!

Todd – you are wearing a beanie!!!! in california!!! oh wait, it is winter, so it must be, what, er… 60F down there? break out the snow gear! hehe.

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22 Precious Pea December 17, 2008 at 8:59 pm

Haha..those photos are so cute. Ahh..my back is itching, scratch please?? Heard of this but first time seeing it. Very unique indeed.

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23 Colleen December 17, 2008 at 9:53 pm

Awesome! I’ve never seen it around here in Marin. It’s probably too cold.
It is just amazing what you two come up with.

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24 Marc @ NoRecipes December 17, 2008 at 9:11 pm

I’ve always wondered what to do with these things (other than take funny photos:-). I have a cache of meyer lemons that are just begging to take a dip in some vodka. Might have to make a run to the liquor store tomorrow!

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25 veron December 17, 2008 at 10:35 pm

So that is what buddha’s hand citron is. I always wondered about it since I have Hangar One buddha’s hand citron vodka – it was the best. I made Iced citron vodka chocolates with it here:

http://kitchenmusings.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/08/chocolatevodkam.html

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26 [email protected] December 17, 2008 at 9:38 pm

WOW! This looks so cool. I’m going to look for some Buhhda’s Citron. What a great idea for a gift to someone as well. I’m inspired.

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27 [email protected] December 17, 2008 at 9:41 pm

OK sorry for the typo or dyslexia … I meant Buddha. Just a little over excited I guess!

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28 dhanggit December 18, 2008 at 2:52 am

oh my goodness this is awesome!! i have never seen one before! thanks for introducing this to me.. and of course your photos are equally fantastic guys!!

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29 diva December 18, 2008 at 3:24 am

love the photos! made me laugh :) i’ve always loved how buddha’s hands looked. they’re kinda cute in a strange, edward scissorhands sorta way. if i do get my ‘hands’ (bad pun, i know) on some, i’ll be sure to give this a go. i mean, i’d never not say ‘yes’ to vodka..x

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30 xA December 18, 2008 at 4:45 am

We recently got a Buddha’s hand in our garden but it hasn’t fruited yet, when it does though, I shall be sure to try this!

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31 Jude December 18, 2008 at 4:23 pm

They look so cool… Reminds me of how ginseng looks.

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32 zenchef December 19, 2008 at 5:59 pm

I am zen chef, and I love Buddha Hands everywhere!…. but what a great idea to infuse vodka with this!! Awesome! I love you guys for the idea. :-)

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33 gaga December 19, 2008 at 10:59 pm

I think the lemon tree in my backyard is related to these guys. I swear, I get some of the funkiest shaped lemons, and a lot of them resemble fingers.

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34 missbhavens December 20, 2008 at 10:13 am

Oh! I saw these at Whole Foods the other day and thought “I can’t buy that terribly expensive thing just because it’s cool. I don’t know what to do with it!”

NOW I know what to do with it!!

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35 Helen December 20, 2008 at 12:08 pm

Wow! What an absolutely incredible fruit! I’ve never seen this before. How interesting too that it has no juice or pulp. I love your idea of putting it in vodka too, its genius!!

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36 Food Woolf December 20, 2008 at 6:15 pm

Hey cool! Can we do an infused vodka tasting? I’ll bring my crab apple and Vietnamese cinnamon (yours!) infused vodka!

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37 Sheetal December 22, 2008 at 12:06 pm

I saw it at Whole Foods just the other day … and almost bought it, but after I had no answer to the husband’s “pray, tell what are you planning to make of it” I kept it back. Now, I can’t wait …

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38 emily December 24, 2008 at 2:04 am

my neighbor has that plant in his backyard, and i was hella wondering what it was.

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39 emily January 4, 2009 at 1:04 am

are these valuable?

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40 desiree@lookiloos January 4, 2009 at 11:39 am

I have to tell you, I was at my local garden center and saw a dwarf version and bought it! All because I had seen it here first. I can’t wait to get the first fruit. Thanks so much for the post. Any growing tips?

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41 Phil Hollenback January 17, 2009 at 11:37 pm

I found a buddha’s hand at the San Francisco Ferry Building farmers market and thought I could make a nice infused vodka with it. I searched online and found your page as my inspiration. I just assembled the bottle full of vodka and citron but the only problem is I don’t know if I can wait 30 days!

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42 Char-lee February 5, 2009 at 6:20 pm

I am going blind looking for recipes for this delicious fruit.
I have several growing on a tree in a container. I have one that I have been keeping in my fridge and just used some of it for the first time in a shrimp dish that called for lemon juice. All I can say is… WOW!!!
This oddity is soo much better than a regular lemon. I am obcessed with turning it into a lemon curd or lemon pie. So far I have hit dead end on the net. Can anyone help me.
I will gladly reward one of the ripe hands for a kick butt recipe for the above.

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43 Geo - Troy February 28, 2009 at 6:28 pm

What a great fruit. I just purchased a 4 foot plant on clearance for $10.00 at my local home improvement center. They have plenty more. The store is located in Lakeland, FL.

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44 Arizona Solar May 3, 2010 at 3:15 pm

Wow! I’ve never even seen this fruit..I wonder where I can find one? Your photos are very good.. I like the ones of you chasing her, and also the finished product. It’s very pretty to look at. Kudos.
-Sylvia

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45 Peggy November 14, 2011 at 10:08 pm

Hi… where do I find the drinks? I just bought the Buddha’s hand

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46 White on Rice Couple November 18, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Hi Peggy,

Thanks for asking. We’ve yet to create a cocktail with it which has really wowed us using the Buddha’s hand. If you find one or come up with one, we’d love to hear about it.

We love using the Buddha’s hand zest in a vinaigrette or candying the fingers.

T

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