Blood Oranges Three Ways
As we are right in the middle of the short blood orange season in Australia, August to October, I didn’t want to miss another chance to marvel at the beautiful colours and unique patterns inside each orange. I picked up 1.5 kg of blood oranges, (3 lbs), and googled some simple spring like recipes.
When I found a few I liked, I started to cut the skin away from the oranges and was just blown away by the differences in colours and eagerly started to cut open the whole bag like a kid in a candy store. The two pieces above just captivated me. Natural beauty, there is nothing like it.
The three recipes I chose were; Blood Orange Margaritas, Blood Orange Salsa and Blood Orange Granita. I am on a real Mexican and Italian kick at the moment. I have been making my own pasta and dinning out with friends a lot recently and Mexican cuisine seems to be the flavour of the month!
So grab a bag of oranges, keep in mind to keep any excess juice from the first two recipes and let’s go!
Margaritas! Oh, how I love a margarita. My mum loves to drink them and when I lived in the USA, there was this great Mexican place in Traverse City, MI that had huge fishbowl sized margaritas, 2L, that just made me happy! I guess you can say margaritas make me feel like I am reliving the ‘good ol’ days’.
In an older issue of Delicious Magazine, they had a Mexican feature with Orange & Lime Margaritas. So I just substituted the regular old orange for a blood orange. I am really looking forward to drinking more of these as summer is just around the corner, although you wouldn’t know it with Melbourne’s crazy spring weather.
Blood Orange Margaritas
Makes 2 cocktails
1/4 cup blood orange juice, reserve the orange halves/wedges
2 tablespoons sea salt
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 cup tequila
1/4 cup triple sec
1 teaspoon agave syrup* optional
Ice to serve
Rub the rim of the glass with the juiced orange halves/wedges, (I like to juice small quantities with my hands. I love watching Jamie Oliver do it.), and rub the rim of the glass in the sea salt.
Place the orange and lime juices, tequila, triple sec and agave syrup in a cocktail shaker and shake until well combined.
Fill the glasses with ice, then strain over the margarita and serve with an orange wedge.
Salsa baby! I love finger and snack foods. This is probably the reason why I love functions with canapés. I could seriously eat salsa and corn chips for dinner. Two nights ago, some friends and I went to Mamasita in Melbourne. Their corn chips are perfect and of course we started out the night with salsa, guac and chips.
When Blood Orange Salsa came up in a google search, it was on. A recipe from Saveur, it was super tasty and I loved the juice tartness from the oranges. If I was making it again, I would throw in some chopped cherry tomatoes to balance the tartness. If that takes your fancy, do it and let me know how it goes!
The paper I have in this shot is from a Mexican joint, Guzman y Gomez. I love their soft shell tacos and knew their paper would come in handy, so I folded it up and put it in my bag before I got chipotle mayo and black bean juice all over it!
Blood Orange Salsa
Makes 2 cups
2 blood oranges
1 ripe avocado, cubed
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeño, sliced or minced
Handful cilantro, torn
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Corn chips to serve
Using a sharp knife, cut the top and bottom off the orange. Now remove the skin for the orange by cutting from the top to the middle of the orange, and then from the middle to the bottom. Continue around the orange until all the skin is removed. You can now use your finger to separate the oranges into segments. Remove any white pith with a knife. (If that didn’t make sense, here is a great visual explanation). Set the segments somewhere aside to allow any excess juice to drain off. Keep the juice.
In a bowl, mix together the avocado, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Once mixed, add the orange segments and serve with your favourite corn chips.
Granita – a dessert with just natural, simple goodness. Freezing freshly squeezed juice to make fancy looking dessert with zero hassle.
What is great about this recipe is that any excess juice that you had from the above recipes and left over oranges can be turned into a simple dessert. Throw a few segments of orange in a glass, top with granita and whola!
Blood Orange Granita
2 cups freshly squeezed blood orange juice, strained
2/3 cup water
Mix together the juice and water. Pour juice into a shallow pan and place in the freezer. After 30 mins, scrap the pan with a fork to break up the ice crystals. Make sure to scrap all sides of the pan to ensure the consistency of the ice crystals. Repeat every 30 minutes for 2-3 hours, until the consistency is achieved, (similar to crushed ice).
Note: you can add sugar to your granita if you like. Keep in mind you will need to dissolve the sugar into hot water and let it cool before mixing with the juice and placing in the freezer.