Yuzu are hardy trees that can be found growing even in tiny urban gardens in Tokyo, but the biggest production area of this citrus fruit is Shikoku, where three prefectures (Tokushima, Kochi and Ehime) churn out over 75% of Japan’s yuzu.

At first, the small yellow globes may seem a little difficult to deal with. Yuzu are relatively dry and seed-filled when compared to lemons or limes, and while it takes around 13 to 15 oranges to make a liter of pure juice, it takes up to 80 yuzu to make the same. However, they are a versatile ingredient that can be used in their entirety, with nothing going to waste.

Let's start with the most obvious ingredient, the juice. A yuzu’s complex, layered citrus flavor means it can be used in anything from drinks or desserts to salad dressing or marinades. As the juice is intensely aromatic, a little goes a long way with this winter staple. Just a couple of drops are enough to give a fresh kick to a cup of tea, and one teaspoon is plenty to flavor a bowl of nabe (hot pot).