“Waste Not, Want Not” Series: Shriveled Oranges
Growing up, the saying “Waste not, Want not” was a common saying my mom would repeat all the time. Over the years she taught me great ways to reuse items, whether it be using toilet paper rolls for craft projects or freezing bread ends to make bread crumbs. The idea was to keep as much as you could out of the garbage can.
Now that I am a mom, I’ve realized that this need to reuse is something I want to teach my children as well. Lately, I’ve been focused on being able to use up as much produce in my house before it goes bad. The obvious way to do this is to actually eat all of it when it’s ripe which is the goal I have in mind when I purchase fruits and veggies. Unfortunately, life throws curve balls and so, while you promised yourself you’d eat three to five servings of fruit each day, somehow only one piece ended up in your belly.
Because my goal hasn’t been as attainable as I’d like these last few weeks, I’ve been stuck looking into a fruit bowl and veggie drawer filled with yummy items that don’t exact look as good as they did when I first bought them. Technically they are still edible but don’t look or feel very appealing. So I decided I’d come up with some ways to reuse these aging pieces of produce and avoid tossing them in the compost.
My first challenge was a big bag of cutie oranges I bought at Costco last week. I completely intended on feeding these to my family as snacks every day but they accidentally got buried beneath some apples and were forgotten.
They weren’t rotten but had all become shrivelled and lost their plumpness. So I thought about what I could do to still enjoy these lovely sweet orbs. I thought about juicing them but they were so tiny that they couldn’t produce more than a few drops each using a manual juicer (I’m planning to grab an automatic one of the site very soon!) So instead I came up with another idea that, after trying out, actually worked out. Here’s what I did:
I washed the oranges under cold water and then cut them up into quarters.
I then stuffed the quarters into my shiny blender, peel and all, in preparation of being turned into pulp.
Lastly, I turned the switch to high and watched these little cuties become a lot of juicy orange pulp.
I know you are now wondering, “What in the heck is she going to do with all this orange pulp?” I did a little research online and found a bunch of muffin recipes that actually call for blending whole oranges! So my plan is to use some right away to make a batch of yummy muffins and then freeze the rest for the next batch I make. So simple it scared me!
S0 hopefully next time you find a forgotten orange hidden in the back of the fridge that has lost its “zest” you’ll think of this idea and manage to carry forward the “waste not, want not” tradition. Oh and here’s the recipe I’m planning to use the whole orange pulp in tonight, courtesy of Jessica from Lovely Wee Days Blog:
Date & Orange Muffins
2 oranges2 large eggs 200g butter, melted and cooled slightly1 Cup pitted dates, roughly chopped400g natural yoghurta little lemon juice3/4 Cup sugar 3 Cups standard flour2 tsp baking soda2 tsp baking powder1/2 tsp saltPreheat the oven to 200 degrees. Grease two 12-hole muffin pans.Blend the whole oranges in the food processor–skin, seeds, everything! Add the eggs and melted butter. Whirl the mixture around, but do not over-process. Place it in a large bowl with the dates.Mix the yoghurt, lemon juice and sugar together in a bowl. Sift the dry ingredients into another bowl. Add the yoghurt mixture and the dry ingredients to the orange mixture, alternating small amounts of each. Just blend with the lightest movement–do not over-mix. Place 2 tablespoons of batter in each hole of the prepared muffin pans.Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a skewer inserted in the muffins comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 5 minutes and then cool on a wire rack. The muffins keep for 2-3 days in an airtight container. These muffins also freeze well.