Deep-Fried Citrus Slices
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2.29 from 28 votes

Deep-fried Citrus Slices

I don’t always bother with an accompaniment for these, but when I do, I make this yogurt dip. You can replace the fennel with any of the flavor suggestions mentioned above, or indeed anything else you fancy.
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Deep-fried Citrus Slices
Servings: 4
Author: Catherine Phipps


  • 2 –3 citrus fruits a variety is good
  • 7 tablespoons buttermilk
  • Generous 1/2 cup plain all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon semolina or fine cornmeal
  • A neutral-tasting oil such as groundnut or sunflower, for deep-frying


  • Smoked chili chipotle or hot smoked paprika (for lime slices)
  • Herbes de Provence or za’atar for orange slices
  • Fennel pollen or sumac for lemon slices


  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds crushed
  • A pinch of sugar
  • A squeeze of lemon juice
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • If serving with the dip, make this first – simply mix everything together and season with salt and pepper.
  • Top and tail the citrus fruit to the point where you get a good showing of flesh as opposed to pith and skin. Slice the fruit as finely as possible while keeping each slice intact, removing any pips.
  • Put the buttermilk in a bowl. Put the flour and semolina onto a plate and season with salt and pepper, then whisk briefly to combine and get rid of any lumps.
  • Dip the citrus slices in the buttermilk and shake or lightly scrape them to get rid of any excess. Drop the slices into the flour mixture and give the plate a little shake. Flip over and repeat. Dust off any excess – you don’t want a thick coating as you want to see the detail from the citrus through the batter.
  • Heat enough oil for deep-frying in a heavy-based saucepan or fryer to about 180ºC/350ºF. Fry the slices a few at a time – when they start to go golden brown remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with kitchen paper. The slices will continue to brown once they are removed and will be nicely caramelized in patches.
  • Sprinkle with salt, then the corresponding spices and/or herbs for each fruit and serve with yogurt dip, if you like. 


From Citrus by Catherine Phipps, photos by Mowie Kay, used with permission from Quadrille (2017).