Every year I am gifted a very large quantity of oranges from my family. My uncle, who has since passed away, had been giving me oranges from his orange tree, they are small oranges, but the juiciest oranges I have ever had. My kids get so excited for orange season. Luckily my cousins have continued with this gifting.
Now with the abundance of oranges I always like to think of new things I can make with them, and as I love limoncello, I figured it was time to try orangecello.
We really enjoyed this, so much so I made a few bottles of it, so I can sip on it all year long. It has got a lovely orange flavour. I will never throw away orange peels away again, especially when I know the oranges have no wax on them.
If using store bought oranges, before you begin you'll want to scrub the oranges to remove any wax on the skin. Place the oranges in a bowl of boiling water, leave for a couple of minutes and then scrub with a brush to remove any wax before rinsing under cold water. Dry the oranges before proceeding with the recipe.
This is something new to my household, but I know I'll be making this for many years to come.
Makes 1.5 litres
7 medium navel oranges, preferably organic
1 x 750ml bottle vodka
2 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
Using a vegetable peeler, remove the peel from the oranges in long strips (reserve the oranges for another use). Using a small sharp knife, trim away the white pith from the orange peels; discard the pith. Put the orange peels in a 1.9 litre jug or large glass bowl. Pour the vodka over the peels and cover with plastic wrap. Steep the orange peels in the vodka for 4 days at room temperature.
In a medium saucepan, combine the water and sugar over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the syrup to cool, about 20 minutes. Pour the syrup over the vodka mixture. Cover and let stand at room temperature overnight. Strain the orangecello through a mesh strainer. Discard the peels. Transfer the orangecello to bottles. Seal the bottles and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and keeps up to 1 month. I place mine in the freezer, then it lasts longer, unless we drink it, that is.
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