For those that are familiar with blood oranges, I know I don’t need to share the hype with you! You know just how good they are on their own, no recipe needed. Every bite is a wonderful experience of sweet orange with a hint of raspberry. The flesh gets its red color from anthocyanin, an antioxidant. The pigments begin accumulating during the cooler temperatures of the night and will continue to deepen after harvest in cold storage. Translation: They taste amazing and they are really good for you!
I think living in Ventura County can make one slightly impervious to citrus, especially if you are like me and have a constant supply of oranges in your own yard. One taste of a blood orange can remind us of how lucky we are to live in an area where we have access to the usual – and not so usual varieties.
I remember how surprised I was the first time I cut into a blood orange, I didn’t know what to expect – but as the name would imply, it bled all over my cutting board providing a shocking intro for the young ones who were somewhat reluctant to part-take in this ritual. It was love at first bite.
If you really don’t want to eat them raw, there are all sorts of recipes out there to try. They are wonderful in a salad alongside some roasted beets. You could juice them and make a wonderful cocktail. I have included a super simple recipe below for sorbet made with blood oranges (or any orange will work). But honestly, I still feel the best way to enjoy them is just by themselves.
Approximately 10 blood oranges
1 T fresh lemon juice (optional)
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup of water
You’ll want at least 2 cups of juice; you can use regular oranges to make up the difference. Combine water with sugar in a small (non-reactive) saucepan and heat until the sugar is dissolved, stirring frequently. Add the sugar syrup to the orange/lemon juice and chill for 1-2 hours, and then process using an ice cream maker.