Drying Oranges at home

Why drying oranges?

For this winter you can decorate your home with slices of citrus fruit to make in the oven. It’s easy to make, cost effective and gives a very nice sent in your home during the preparation. If you have an oven you should defenitly try it!

You can use these dehydrated slices for:

  • decorate your Christmas wreaths
  • make a 100% natural garland
  • decorate a potpourri in the living room
  • decorate your Christmas table
  • decorate gift packages to your loved ones

In this post I would like to tell you how I did it for the first time this year. It was really easy but I must warn you that it can take a long time to dry well. Let’s see how to make some at home…

Preparation

Tools

To make some nice orange slices you will need :

  • Oranges of course. Count approximately 2 oranges per cooking grill in your oven. So if you only have 2, then dont buy more than, 4 big oranges.
  • A very sharp knife. It is important that it is sharp otherwise you won’t be able to cut thin slices, and the drying part will take forever.
  • Towels or
  • Cooking paper
  • An oven that can heat at 70 to 80°C

Preheating the oven

Once you have everything in front of you, you can already preheat the oven at 75°C or 80°C. Make sure your oven stays that temperature during all the drying part. If it gets too hot, you will see your slices become brown (and we don’t want that!).

Cutting the oranges

You can start cutting the oranges in beautiful slices of approximately 3 to 4mm maximum. Make sure your knife is really sharp (and be careful not to cut any finger^^). The thinner the slices are, the easiest the drying part is gonna be. If your slices are more than 6mm, don’t use them (you can eat them right now). They will take forever to dry or will burn before they are completely dry.

Wringing the slices

Before putting the slices on the oven rack, you should wring them with a towel or paper. A big part of the juice will come out and you will save some time for the drying part in the oven. Make sure you don’t smash the slices during this procedure.

Drying in the oven

You can now put the slices on the oven rack (on a parchment/backing paper). Dispose them in one single layer, they can touch each other because they will become a bit smaller when drying.

Put them in the oven now, and keep the temperature between 70°C and 80°C.

Every 30min you will turn them upside down, so each part of the orange is dried the same way. It’s important to do so, otherwise your oranges can burn on one side.

The slices will be completely dry in 3 to 4 hours approximately, depending on the thickness of the slices, and your oven of course. Some pieces may dry quickly, in less 2 hours. Make sure that every 30min you remove the ones that are already dried.

If the oven becomes too hot, just remove the racks and let them dry a bit outside, until they completely cool down. Of course you will set your oven to a minimum temperature, or let the door open for a few minutes. Then you can put the slices back in the oven and continue the procedure (but normally this doesn’t happen if you follow the instructions).

If the oven becomes too hot, just remove the racks and let them dry a bit outside, until they completely cool down. Of course you will set your oven to a minimum temperature, or let the door open for a few minutes. Then you can put the slices back in the oven and continue the procedure (but normally this doesn’t happen if you follow the instructions).

Do not try to dry them faster by adding some degrees in the oven, it just doesn’t work.

Each time you will remove some dried slices, you can put them on a cold rack or a plate to let them cool down slowly.

How to store the dried slices

Once every slice is dried, you can let them in your kitchen during a day, to make sure they don’t stay humid or warm. Then, you can store them in a jar, a metal box, or anything that will keep them from getting dry or humid.

Of course you can use them directly for whatever you want : nice decors in your living room, setting a table for celebrations, etc.

If you have tried it please let me know I would be so happy to see it!

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