Raw-Pack Oranges Recipe

This picture represents my ‘orange’ journey. So far, you’ve seen candied orange peel (in the middle pint) and orange marmalade (the squat half-pint). Last night, I explored raw packing the oranges which is represented in the front jar, peeled oranges in a light syrup. The empty canning jar in the picture signifies there may be more to come :-)

Writing this reminded me of the 70’s — my father had a CB radio in our truck and we played with it on road trips to listen to truckers. Each member of our family had a ‘handle’, a nickname used on the CB. My nickname was lovingly ‘half-pint’, as I am the youngest of two boys (and somewhat ‘squat’).

Well, yesterday half-pint marched his butt (and aching back) to the hardware store to buy more canning supplies. I reached the aisle and noticed two older and somewhat rough-and-tumble looking men standing smack dab in front of the canning supplies. It looked like they weren’t going to move, so I politely nudged myself up to the shelves.

One of them looked at me and asked what I was going to do with the jars, “are you gonna do the thing with the gas?”. I innocently replied, “oh no, I’m going to make marmalade.” As soon as the words left my lips, I knew I had said the wrong thing. It was as though I had ordered a Shirley Temple at a biker bar. He scoffed, gave me a sneer, and they both walked away mumbling something to each other. I was left wondering what they planned to do with the jars and how it involved ‘gas’. Clearly, they were not marmalade lovers.

Unfortunately, I mustn’t be the only canner in our area or maybe my post the other day let people know where to find the cute little Ball Elite Platinum jars, because they no longer in stock. They did have 1 pack of the small 8oz. jars, but I wanted to try the 16oz. jars (which they did have the other day). I settled for the standard issue pints and left before the big burly men returned with more questions.

Once again, I used the UC Davis publication on how to preserve oranges (PDF) and followed the instructions for raw packing. I forgot to count how many oranges I used, somewhere around a dozen or so. You simply peel and remove the white pith/seeds. You can use water or varying strengths of a simple syrup and I opted to use a 15% solution to ensure everything came out of the jar sweet.

They look beautiful — I’ve never had oranges prepared this way and am curious how they will taste once opened. I will likely sacrifice one jar this week to find out.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Manggy February 22, 2008, 12:13 am

    That’s a great idea. I like those canned mandarin oranges in syrup, almost completely frozen. I think once you drain them off, you can use them as you would fresh segments, if slightly sweeter. I hope it turns out well.

    I am sure you’re no longer “Half-Pint!” :)
    I have no idea what the “gas thing” is with jars. Weird.

  • Maggie February 22, 2008, 7:07 pm

    Oh my GOD. I’m in love with you. A fabulous boy who loves canning. I could learn a lot from you.

  • Allen February 23, 2008, 1:31 am

    manggy: I cracked open a jar today and they taste good, but alot like grapefruit (?). I still had a little bit of the pitch on a few edges and I think it added enough bitterness to make the taste a little off. They’re still good, but not quite what I expected.

    maggie: Haha! Don’t give your heart away so easily — I’m not sure how fabulous I am and I’m still learning how to can :0

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