When you suprême a citrus fruit, you cut away all the skin, pith, and membranes, leaving the sections of the fruit intact. It's not suprêmely difficult, but it takes some care.
Step 1: Wash exterior Wash the exterior of the citrus fruit and place it on a cutting board.
Step 2: Slice top & bottom Slice half an inch from the top and bottom of the citrus fruit. If it's an especially thick skin, slice more—you want to expose the flesh underneath.
TIP: If you are suprêming a large fruit like a grapefruit, you might want to use a chef's or a serrated knife instead of a pairing knife.
Step 3: Remove peel Stand the citrus upright so it is sitting flat on one of the cut ends. Remove the peel and the underlying white part (the pith) by cutting it off in long, sloping strips from top to bottom.
TIP: It may take a few cuts over the same area to remove all the peel and pith. Keep at it.
Step 4: Find white lines Once you have cut away all the peel and pith, you have a naked citrus. To cut out the individual wedges, look closely at the fruit and find the small white lines that run from top to bottom—these are an extension of the membrane.
Step 5: Make vertical slice Hold the fruit in the palm of your non-knife-wielding hand. With the pairing knife, make a vertical slice along the inside of one of the white lines until you get to the center of the fruit.
Step 6: Make same cut Make the same cut on the opposite side of the segment. With a flicking motion, cut out the segment between the lines. That piece of fruit is the suprême—place it in a bowl.
TIP: Squeeze the leftover membranes for the fresh juice that remains.
Step 7: Cut out wedges Carefully cut out the remaining wedges by slicing along the adjacent membranes and flicking them free. When done, you'll have the beginnings of a suprêmely fabulous citrus salad.
FACT: Grapefruit is the only strain of citrus thought not to have originated in Southeast Asia. It first appeared in the West Indies.