by Dr. Marli Botha

Orange peels are not for the trash or the garbage disposal anymore…! Sure, these fruit casings smell delicious – despite their slightly bitter taste...

Here are 6+ reasons not to toss those citrusy peels away…

  1. Store a 3-inch long peel with your brown sugar to keep it from clumping and hardening and to preserve moisture.
  2. Make an orange-peel vinegar cleaner: Start to store your orange peels.  You can put them in the freezer if you like. When you have enough, put them in a glass jar. Fill the jar up with White vinegar and let it sit for 2 weeks. After two weeks strain the liquid. Discard the peels. Mix water with the vinegar in a ratio of 2:1. Use and enjoy.
  3. There are many ingredients that call for citrus peel, one of which is candied peel. The orange skin is so fragrant and flavourful that you can use it for a variety of dishes, ranging from savoury to sweet. It’s also good for meats like fish because it tones down the “fishy” scent.
  4. Citrus Sugar Scrub: Zest the peel of an orange and add it to 1 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup of olive, almond, sunflower, or grapeseed oil. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and store on the counter in a glass mason jar.
  5. Make an orange pomander. The citrus scent is pleasant and is a great mix with cloves, which repel moths. Use a toothpick and make holes in an orange. Fill the holes with whole cloves. Bake the oranges in the oven on low heat for an hour or until they harden. After cooling, decorate with ribbon or string to form a sling for the orange. Hang in your closets, your bathrooms, your kitchens, or where you keep litter boxes.
  6. Make natural pectin for your jams and jellies. Not everyone is a huge fan of gelatine. You can swap the gelatine with homemade pectin. Fortunately, the white, fibrous part of orange peels also known as the pith is chock-full of the right stuff. Just remove the pith, chop it finely, place it in a cotton muslin drawstring bag and let everything boil in the jam.

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