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Tiki Central Forums » » Tiki Drinks and Food » » Lime juice test
Lime juice test
nvasilakes
Member

Joined: May 23, 2014
Posts: 3
From: Alameda, CA
Posted: 2014-06-07 7:17 pm   Permalink

I did a lot of searching and reading on how well lime juice keeps after it's fresh squeezed. I found answers anywhere from it keeps a couple hours if left uncovered to it keeps up to a week if covered. By the way, by "keeps" I mean as good or almost as good as fresh squeezed.

While doing my research I found a topic where a large group blind tasted lime juice in limeade and overwhelmingly preferred the lime juice that was a few hours old to the lime juice that was squeezed most recently. Apparently a little oxidation is preferable.

Sometimes I just want a tiki drink and I don't want to spend the time fresh squeezing my own limes. I just want the drink quick and easy. I read several reviews on different bottled lime juices and found that, overall, most people recommend Nellie & Joe's Key Lime Juice if you have to go bottled. I bought a bottle and tasted 2 Mai Tai's side-by-side. There was no comparison at all. I had my girlfriend taste them both blind. In her words: "This one [bottled lime] tastes like fruit punch and this one [fresh squeezed lime] tastes like a cocktail." She then took the fresh squeezed version and made for the other room, asking if she could have it without waiting for a response.

So the Nellie and Joe's was a dud. I resigned myself to fresh squeezing limes every time. Then I had an idea.

On May 25th I bought a bunch of limes (they finally went down to 4/$1 at my local source) and hand pressed a little less than 24 oz of lime juice into two clean 12oz beer bottles (I'm a home-brewer). After filling, I sprayed a little inert gas (Private Reserve Wine Preserver) into the bottle, then capped it with a bottle capper. My hypothesis was that the amount of oxygen introduced to the juice while squeezing would be about equivalent to the few hour old juice that won the lime juice taste test I referenced above and that the inert gas (heavier than air) would form a barrier between the juice and the oxygen in the bottle to prevent further oxidation and degradation of flavor. I placed both bottles upright in my fridge.

Well, today, about 2 weeks later, I put my bottle to the test! I made 2 more Mai Tai's, one with fresh squeezed lime and one with the bottled stuff. By the way I made these Mai Tai's with Beach Bum Berry's recipe using: B.G. Reynolds Orgeat, Appleton Extra, Rhum Clement VSOP. I tasted each and found virtually no difference. Actually, if I had to choose, I'd pick the bottled stuff! It tasted a little more...together.

I quickly brought both to my girlfriend and had her taste each one blind. She said they tasted the same. I explained each had different lime juice and when I pressed her to pick one, she gave the bottled stuff a slight edge.

So there you have it! You can bottle your lime juice and it will keep at least 2 weeks and be as good (or better) than fresh squeezed! I still have the other 12oz bottle capped and will do another test later on. Probably 1 month or maybe even more later to see how it holds up.


 
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TikiTacky
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Nov 23, 2010
Posts: 1286
Posted: 2014-06-07 7:48 pm   Permalink

I'm very curious to see how this turns out.

There has been a little discussion about key limes in the past:
http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=24942&forum=10
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El Jefe
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Mar 13, 2012
Posts: 237
From: The Third Coast
Posted: 2014-06-07 8:23 pm   Permalink

There must be something in the air regarding Mai Tais this week. I have been wanting one all week and last night my wife and I met up with some friends and had a spur of the moment pool party. I decided that the Mai Tai was going to be the drink of the night. I also used the Berry 1944 recipe. After about 30 drinks in of hand squeezing limes for each drink I thought there has to be a better way of having lime juice on hand. We also had some of the bottled key lime juice on hand and while definitely not as good as the fresh squeezed it was not horrible. Thanks for the testing and keep us up to date.

 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 935
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-06-07 8:51 pm   Permalink

Folks, I wrote quite a bit about my "squeeze and freeze" activities here:

http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=42747&forum=10&vpost=658277

Sometimes when I want to whip up a drink quickly, all I have to do is go to my freezer for frozen lime and lemon juices in 1oz cylindrical sticks. No need to thaw the juice if you're blending the drink. Otherwise you have several choices on how to thaw the juice.

How long it lasts depends on how well you wrap the juice sticks in plastic (I use sandwich baggies, three sticks per baggie) and how cold your freezer is. I really need to take some photos and post them.
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El Jefe
Grand Member (2 years)  

Joined: Mar 13, 2012
Posts: 237
From: The Third Coast
Posted: 2014-06-07 8:58 pm   Permalink

Thanks for the info Ace. Please post some photos. What ice molds are you using?

 
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nvasilakes
Member

Joined: May 23, 2014
Posts: 3
From: Alameda, CA
Posted: 2014-06-07 9:04 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2014-06-07 20:51, AceExplorer wrote:
Folks, I wrote quite a bit about my "squeeze and freeze" activities here:

http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=42747&forum=10&vpost=658277

Sometimes when I want to whip up a drink quickly, all I have to do is go to my freezer for frozen lime and lemon juices in 1oz cylindrical sticks. No need to thaw the juice if you're blending the drink. Otherwise you have several choices on how to thaw the juice.

How long it lasts depends on how well you wrap the juice sticks in plastic (I use sandwich baggies, three sticks per baggie) and how cold your freezer is. I really need to take some photos and post them.




Ah yeah, I forgot to mention I saw several posts about freezing lime juice. I have a tiny freezer that I can barely keep ice in so I was looking for a refrigerator method. Yours looks like a good method, however!


 
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Sunny&Rummy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 13, 2013
Posts: 449
From: Melbourne, FL
Posted: 2014-06-07 9:29 pm   Permalink

I just zested 15 limes this week to make a batch of falernum and not wanting to let the juice go to waste I juiced the zested limes and froze it. If frozen lime juice is good enough for Tiki Ti it is certainly good enough for me.
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 935
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-06-07 9:46 pm   Permalink

Sunny & Rummy - that's exactly what got me started freezing juice. What to do with all the yummy limes from Falernum-making activities?

El Jefe - I use "water bottle" long and skinny ice molds from Wally World.

I will post pictures. I'm trying to see if time allows me to make a batch of Falernum before I drive to the Hukilau. I drive up one day early to relax on the beach and monitor the bikinis running around there.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 935
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-06-16 8:10 pm   Permalink

Here is a photo of the molds I use to "squeeze & freeze" my juices:



Each "stick" is just under one fluid ounce -- actually about .95 ounces each. Note that you must use a long-handled spoon (I use an "iced tea spoon") to firmly but carefully push the juice sticks out of the mold. This helps ensure that the sticks don't break. These molds cost 2 or 3 bucks at Wally World and they're designed to make skinny ice cubes to drop into water bottles.

I freeze leftover juices into sticks and store them in baggies for future use. Three sticks in each baggie, then 3 packs of 3 (9 total) in a small carton. This allows me quite a bit of flexibility when I want to make something without having to run to the grocery store.

I will post more pics later to show my storage method. I have some leftover limes from my Hukilau trip that need to be squeezed and frozen.


 
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