Orange peels and rinds are oft ignored flavor salvos just too good to toss or compost. These spongy fruit overcoats hold concentrated essential oils and chewy textures destined to brighten up any pallid palate or daily diet with a shot of orange-flavored sunshine. Hyperbole? I think not. Orange peels are not only tasty morsels, but good for you as well, promising more vitamins, fiber and flavonoids than the actual fruit it protects. And because orange flavor is a universally loved treat, I wanted to find a way to plop it by the spoonful in any batter, bowl or recipe I so chose to emboldened, enrich or imbue.
I came up with a recipe I call Orange Peel Caviar. It gets me and my kitchen conjurings through the misty grey winters of the Pacific Northwest, at least until local fruits and berries appear.
While making orange peel caviar is easy to make, I did feel I had some ‘splainin’ to do, so I made a little instructional video (homemade for sure) for clarity, and my basic need to belabor the subject. 😉
Update: I suggest using organic oranges, as even washing may not rid pesticide from the rinds (from what I read).
Tom’s Homemade Video: How to Make Orange Peel Caviar
I also wrote down the recipe, as seen below. So don’t toss those peels, save them for a bite of sunshine on a rainy day!
Orange Peel Caviar
- 6 - 7 Oranges Peeled
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups water
- 1 - 2 tablespoon orange liqueur or brandy (Grand Marnier, Triple Sec)
|Peel oranges, first cut "north pole" off, and then the "south pole" off|
|Going lengthwise down the orange make five evenly spaced slits into the peel, to facilitate removal of peel from orange.|
|Slice peel section into thick julienne widths, like the size of shoestring potatoes, or a little larger.|
|Put peels in nonreactive pan, add sugar and water and stir to dissolve.|
|Simmer slowly for about ten minutes and remove from heat.|
|Let pan cool and reheat the pan at a later time and simmer gently, and shut off heat. Do this a couple more times in the days to come adding more orange peel is fine. The orange peel will candy that is look bright and shiny and firmer, and the runny liquid will become more of a syrup.|
|Place orange peel in food processor. Add a tablespoon or two of Grand Marnier or Triple Sec or Patron Orange Liqueur and pulse until minced and chunky, and spreadable.|
|Place orange peel mixture in jars, leaving 1/2 inch air space and add lid, tighten and place in simmering water bath for 10-15 minutes and then remove to cool. If you prefer not to can the mixture, you can freeze it and scoop the orange peel caviar as needed from a ziploc bag or sealed container.|
The great part of this recipe is not only the taste but how easy it is to set up and make. Any time you eat an orange, save and cut the peel and plop it in a pan of sugar water, simmer and remove from heat and repeat the process every time you add a peel to the pot. When the pan is full, plop orange rinds in food processor, chop into a chunky paste and can or freeze to have on hand when you need some seriously good orange flavor in a recipe or dish. Oh, and it’s good by the spoonful, too.
Despite his rigorous and indispensable role here on the farm, buddy finds time to send you his love.