Few things are better than fresh seasonal oranges. This sensational citrus isn’t just a legendary half-time snack, it’s an incredibly versatile ingredient that works perfectly in everything from cakes to salads and easy marinades.
Juice them, segment them or simply use their zest to lift the other flavours in a dish, oranges really have no limits in both sweet and savoury cooking. So lucky for us, this favourite fruit is available all year round in Australia.
Here’s everything you need to know about using oranges in cooking:
- Varieties: Valencia, Navel & Blood Oranges
- Valencia oranges: Available September – April
- Valencia oranges are sweet and perfect for juicing, eating fresh or adding to salads
- Navel oranges: Available May – November
- Navel oranges are the easiest variety to peel, which makes them wonderful for zesting. They are also delicious when added to savoury recipes
- Blood oranges: Have a deep crimson coloured flesh and a less acidic, rich flavour.
- Why are blood oranges red? The colour comes from anthocyanin, the same type of pigment that is in blueberries and red wine.
How to select an orange for cooking
When selecting an orange, look for a firm fruit with bright colouring and no obvious markings to it’s skin.
If you want to juice your orange, a slightly softer fruit will make the process a little easier. Oranges will soften naturally if you let them sit for a few days before use.
How to cut an orange
Cut the orange in half. Lay the halves on their flat side. Cut each half into three separate wedges with a large utility knife.
Cut both ends off the fruit so it sits flat. Following the curve of the fruit, remove the skin and white pith. Then, simply following the membrane of the orange, cut into segment widths of your choosing.
Using oranges in cooking is a great way to pack extra nutrition in your diet. Oranges are rich in antioxidants, high in dietary fibre and are full of vitamin C which protects our immune system.
Orange flavour combinations
- Oranges + cinnamon + ginger
- Oranges + vanilla + ricotta
- Oranges + blueberry + white chocolate
- Oranges + star anise + cinnamon + brown sugar
- Oranges + fennel + prawns
- Oranges + dark chocolate