Sighhhhh, I just live for citrus season. There is nothing better than picking freshly ripened oranges and grapefruits off of the trees this time of year. The scent is amazing and lifts my spirits instantly.
Watching the citrus form in the summer while it’s still scorching hot here in Phoenix brings a sense of hope that cooler days are ahead. The cooler (shorter) days are finally here and citrus is a bright spot in the darkening days.
As one of the 5 C’s of Arizona, citrus trees are plenty here in the low desert. In my humble opinion, they are essential to Arizona life. Now that we live in a home that cranks out citrus several times a year, it’s time I find some decent ways to use the fruit up (besides eating it straight off the tree).
Here are the type of citrus growing at the bungalow:
- Cara Cara Oranges
- Persian (or Bearss) Limes
- Key Limes (our newest addition)
- Oro Blanco Grapefruit
What to do with all of the fruit citrus season brings?
Aside from having an abundance of fresh juice on hand, there are so many possibilities when it comes to using citrus.
Dehydrate the citrus slices
There’s something magical about dehydrating citrus slices in the winter. These dried fruit slices have a lot of great uses — cocktail toppers, gift decor, dried potpourri additions. They also happen to make the perfect organic holiday decor.
Create organic holiday decor
After creating holiday decor with dried orange slices last year, I’m happy to report that the garland and ornaments are still holding up! Dried orange slices are an amazing addition to a fresh wreath, garland or tree. For Thanksgiving this year, I even hung fresh citrus branches with mandarins still attached to them over our dinner table with fresh myrtle berries. At our drink station, I filled glass votives with fresh pecans, LED battery-operated candles and orange slices. The flickering light shone through the orange slices like gorgeous little stained glass windows.
….Or regular mimosas. Mimosa flight anyone? Or here’s the link to those deconstructed mimosas.
Bake citrus-infused goodies
So many baked goodies await when you have a surplus of citrus. I’ve tried my hand at a few over the years but I am always looking for new recipes to try.
Make pretty decor for a charcuterie board
DIY cleaning supplies
I’m going to be making some DIY citrus cleaning spray!
Homemade beauty products
This citrus sugar scrub is calling my name!
I recently asked a nice gentleman at McClendon Select if they had any blood oranges. He informed me that they are the last to ripen for the season. So I hope to be seeing some out at the markets soon!
What are your favorite things to do with citrus?! Tis the season!