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Citrus Juicer

Electric Citrus Juicer

Electric Citrus Juicer
© Roy Schuurhuis

A Citrus Juicer is a device designed to extract juice from citrus fruit. There are manually-powered ones, and electric ones.

Manual ones can be simple hand-operated devices, or machines that work with you supplying the power.

Simple manual ones are good for processing up to 2 or 3 fruits at a time. They also usually require little storage space, and can fit easily into drawers.

Before choosing an electric Citrus Juicer, inquire what clean-up involves, and what storage space is required.

There was a time when you could count on finding one in every kitchen in North America, though now with the demise of homecooking and basic baked goods such as "lemon bread", that's not necessarily so anymore.

If you have to operate without one, cut the citrus fruit in half and squeeze it using your hands over a bowl. Turn the fruit inside out after and press it again, to extract the rest of the juice.

Citrus Reamers

Manual Citrus Juicer

Manual Citrus Juicer
© Denzil Green

Perhaps the classic juicer is the "reamer in a bowl" style, meant to sit flat on a work surface while you are using them.

These types consist of a small, shallow flat bowl with edges, and in the centre, a ridged mound, which is the reamer part. They are usually made entirely of the same material, which will usually be glass, or a stainless steel reamer and a plastic bowl.

To operate this classic type, you cut a lemon in half, press it upside down on top of the ridged mound, and twist it back and forth to extract the juice. The juice gathers in the saucer. The saucer will have a spout on it for pouring the juice out, and ridges to catch the seeds and pulp.

Lemon Reamer

Lemon Reamer
© Denzil Green

There are also hand-held "reamers." They are usually made of wood, or silicone plastic.

They consist of a pointy, tear-drop shaped, ridged piece of wood with a handle attached, about 6 inches (15 cm) long in total. You cut a citrus fruit in half, press the reamer into one of the halves, then twist it back and forth to "ream" the lemon and press the juice out. Before reaming, if you see seeds, you can use the pointy end of the reamer to dig and flip them out. While reaming, hold the fruit over a bowl or whatever it is you wish the juice to go into.

Citrus Presses

Other hand-operated ones are machines that have an arm on them that you pull down to force the juice out of the fruit. Typically, these consist of two squeezing parts on a bracket that has a handle. You put a half a lemon in the bottom squeezing part, and use the handle to lower the top squeezing part onto that, then press or pull down forcefully to press the juice out. Though made out of metal, arms on some less-expensive models can break with undue force. These types of citrus juice extractors are sometimes referred to as citrus presses, as there is no reaming action.

Electric Juicers

Electric Citrus Juicer

Electric Citrus Juicer
© Roy Schuurhuis

Electric Juicers are good for processing large numbers of citrus fruit at a time, and can get more juice out than you would with manual power. The downside is that most need counter space, and prime counter space at that, near an electrical outlet. Consequently, many get stored in cupboards, and tend to never emerge from there until someone has a clear-out for a yard or boot sale.

They have a filter that collects and strains out the pulp. Some models may slow down after pulp builds up inside, and require you to clean them out after every 2 or 3 fruits processed (the pulp of Valencia oranges won't get as loose and cause as frequent clogging.) Some models may dance across the counter from the vibrations they make. Some electric ones can dig into the white pith of citrus fruits, adding some bitterness to the juice.

Some electric ones have different cones you swap in to accommodate larger citrus fruit such as grapefruit.

Cooking Tips

Rub outsides of fruit first in water or running water to remove pesticides, contaminants, etc, before slicing and juicing.

Zapping a citrus fruit first in the microwave for a few seconds can yield more juice. No more than that, though, or hot juice could squirt out and scald you when you start to juice it. And, if you are making juice to drink, warm isn't generally considered desirable.


Citrus Juicer; Lime Squeezer

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Also called:

Lemon Reamer; Presse-fruits (French); Exprimidor casero (Spanish); Espremedor de limão (Portuguese)


Oulton, Randal. "Citrus Juicer." CooksInfo.com. Published 10 November 2004; revised 08 August 2011. Web. Accessed 05/25/2018. <http://www.cooksinfo.com/citrus-juicer>.

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