The Curious Uses for Oranges

by Kirsty McGonigle 2 months ago in food

Orange you glad to learn them?

The Curious Uses for Oranges
Photo by Cristina Matos-Albers on Unsplash

Having lifted my head from my studies, I can now begin to delve back into a former passion of mine; scepticism of DIY crafts and hacks. This led me to commence clawing through my many unfinished projects and deciding that the best course of action was to start anew. So, I began the hunt for fresh ideas. Speaking of which, wasn't the fruit bowl I had just filled looking lovely? Would be a shame to ruin it...or not.

I placed my hand into its depths and came across my next big venture, the vitamin C delight; a humble orange. Scouring the web, I came across many tutorials on the possible uses for oranges, some of which I will divulge to you this day of their effectiveness or their failure.

The first guide that caught my eye was the How To Orange Candle. This was particularly intriguing since I had just run out of scented candles and needed a citrus aroma to brighten up my flat. And so, I set to work by carving the orange in half and then scooping out the pulp as the tutorial instructed. Perhaps reading ahead, I would have noticed that you don't wash out the orange, but you live, and you learn as the saying goes. Not to be discouraged, I continued by filling the hollowed-out husk with olive oil and leaving to soak for a couple of minutes. As I lit my match, I saw the glimmer of hope slowly fade as the orange stem that forms the wick failed to ignite. My second mistake was maybe proceeding to put the orange in the microwave out of frustration which surprisingly, did nothing. With more persistence, I could see this working, but for now, I remain the sceptic.

Not one to be disheartened, I then moved onto the next phase of orange investigations, yes we're calling them phases. My newfound obsession with skincare came alive when it saw that I could make my own orange peel body scrub! So I got to work, first by zesting a whole lemon. I then added about 200 grams of granulated sugar and a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil (coconut oil and almond oil are also possibilities). I then simply mixed this together and out of morbid curiosity, I took a spoonful to taste. Unsurprisingly, it feels a lot better on the skin that it tastes. It doesn't have a particularly strong scent. Still, my body definitely felt lighter for all the minuscule bits of grime that the scrub brushed away. The scrub definitely has my seal of approval.

As a little aside, I should note that a shoddy use of orange is in rhyming. Maybe in some accents, the word orange could be morphed into another form but for now, let's just appreciate how oranges are like people; totally unique!

Getting back on track, it was then time for the third and fourth phases. As I was tidying my kitchen of all the stray orange pips and pulp, I wondered if perhaps the little orange could come to the rescue as a cleaning hero. And so, I turned to the trusty tutorial world and found out that oranges actually make for a great kitchen sink scrubber. With a little salt rubbed into the orange, I happily scrubbed away all the mysterious stains. I left the remainder of the orange to seep in the water to fragrance the workspace. This method is not only practical but also eco-friendly so really, what's not to love?

As I sit back and write here, I sip away on phase four; the herbal tea concoction. In the spirit of using what I have around my house, I made personal alterations to some of the recipes. But hey, what's life without a little risk? Phase four perfectly exemplifies this adventure. I combined orange peels I had kept aside and half of another orange in a pan of water on the stove. I kept the mixture simmering for about 5 minutes. I then added ground cumin (the recipe initially asks for cumin seeds) and a green tea packet or bag. This then boiled for another 5-10 minutes and then was left to steep for a few more. Pouring the tea into any old mug, I then added a generous squirt of honey and voila. According to the recipe, this concoction is not only relaxing but good for the digestion and of course with the oranges, a source of Vitamin C.

And so, this brings my deep dive into the juicy world of oranges to a close for now. Rest assured, however, I have only just begun squeezing every last bit of potential out of the everyday objects in my home.

Afterword: I want to say that I wish I was sorry for all the orange related puns but in truth...I really don't peel sorry at all.

Kirsty McGonigle
Kirsty McGonigle
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Kirsty McGonigle
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