Ever since, orange juice has always been my daughter’s favorite beverage. Before going to work, I always make sure that I prepare orange juice along with her snack for school. However, due to my upcoming promotion next month, I don’t think my schedule will still allow me to go to the market to buy fresh oranges as often as I usually do. So I need to know the best way to store oranges so that I can buy more at once and lessen my need to go to the market. Can I freeze it?
It is really great to know that your child loves drinking orange juice. Orange is known to be an excellent source of vitamin C which is essential for reducing the risk of many diseases including colon cancer. In fact, drinking a glass of orange juice is proven to be better than taking vitamin C supplement alone.
There are several ways to preserve orange. Freezing is one of them. However, freezing may affect its texture and color. Also, whole oranges freeze better than when sliced.
Can You Freeze Oranges
Freezing is an efficient way to preserve orange. Though freezing may degrade its texture, color, and flavor, it is still one of the most common ways of preservation.
Oranges, in general, can be frozen for up to six months. This includes both whole and sliced. Adding sugar and water to sliced oranges can make it last for up to a year.
It is crucial to take as much air as possible out of the freezer bag or the container to be used before freezing them. This is because too much exposure to air can degrade their quality.
They can be contained in glass jars, rigid plastic containers, syrup packs, and dry packs. They must be thawed in a room temperature and never in a microwave oven.
A certain kind of orange called the navel orange does not freeze well. Freezing this type of orange develops a very bitter compound called limonin.
Other well used preservation methods are dehydration and canning. It is highly important to select fresh oranges if you really want to maintain high quality.
How to Freeze Oranges
As mentioned earlier, there are several ways to preserve oranges. Each method has both pros and cons. Freezing is probably the easiest one.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to freeze oranges appropriately:
- Select the Oranges
This is a crucial step for freezing oranges successfully. Make sure that the oranges you choose are ripe. Do not choose those who still have the stem attached to them as this indicates that it is not yet fully ripe.
- Peel and cut
Wash and peel the oranges. Then divide them into sections and remove the seeds and membranes. It is very important to cover or refrigerate cut oranges if they are not to be frozen immediately.
- Add water and sugar
Mix cups of sugar with 4 cups of water. Stir it until the sugar dissolves. Boil it in a frying pan then pour it on the oranges to be frozen when already cool.
- Put in the container
You can use jars, plastic containers, and freezer bags. The most important thing to note, however, is to keep as much air as possible out of the container before finally freezing them.
After accomplishing all the above steps properly, you can now finally place them in the freezer. They can last for 6 to 12 months frozen.
There are many recipe ideas already made with oranges. Here are some of those which you can experiment with and further improve:
Orange jam is a luscious soft set marmalade. This delicious jam is very easy to prepare. Enjoy it with tea and toast.
This cake recipe is done without eggs. Everybody will surely love this fluffy, light, and yummy snack. You can glaze this with different syrups and toppings as you desire.
Candied Orange Peel
This homemade candy is so different from those being sold in stores. This desert is naturally zesty and aromatic. It is very easy and cheap to make this as this only requires the orange peels.