What to do with Dehydrated Orange Slices

It’s amazing to think that part of my dinner was prepared 16 months ago (here’s a link to how we dehydrated orange slices back then – some of those exact oranges were used in the following meal)…

People occasionally ask us what to do with some of our ‘odder’ ingredients – just as dried orange slices (they include the peel after all).  People are often surprised when I simply say “eat them”:

It’s not quite as simple as eating them straight from the jar – but it’s not far off.

I roughly chop them into smaller pieces and add them to marinades like so:

Stir them in really well and make sure they get some time in the marinade (i.e. 20-60 minutes).  The longer they sit, the more flavor they will impart – and the more marinade they will use to rehydrate themselves.  I stir-fry the entire lot and eat away – you will eat the rind without even noticing (though it can give a pleasantly chewy texture).

The peel adds a pleasant bitterness – offset by the flavors of the marinade it has absorbed in the process of rehydration.

If you’d rather not eat the rind (or want to try), add the slices whole and it’s easier to separate the rehydrated flesh without eating the peel.

Here’s a rough recipe I used last night (I didn’t measure) to marinade some beef:

  • Dehydrated oranges.  Lots.  I quartered these mandarin-sized slices.
  • Fresh garlic (would have added ginger as well but didn’t have any)
  • Soy Sauce (use a fair bit – the beef and orange will suck them up)
  • Oyster Sauce (to flavor – I’m a saucy guy and went liberal)
  • Chile flakes (lots)
  • Honey (about a tablespoon – it’s a nice kiss with the hot peppers)
  • Salt (you don’t need a lot – the soy takes care of most of this)
  • Pepper (we used fine-grated white pepper).
  • Beef

My final product tasted a little too much like marinade.  I added some stock (veggie or chicken would do), brought to a simmer, added a bit of corn starch (mixed separately in a cup with a bit of the hot liquid to avoid clumping) and thickened.

Let it all mix together and come to room temperature before cooking.I tossed it all in a cast iron pan (it splattered and made a fun mess that was easy to clean) and Dana stir-fried some veggies, garlic and sesame seeds separately.  We served it all on rice (which was cooked with a few slices of dehydrated lemons and stock).

I love to use preserving as a method of making ingredients – something that isn’t complete by itself but takes another dish to a level it just couldn’t get to otherwise (even with ‘fresh’ product).

Any other favorite uses out there for these?

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Leave a Reply

  1. I’ve never done any dehydrating but I believe a whole dried orange or two placed on top of a beef stew as it simmers covered, then discarded before serving would add an extra something that would be hard to place but memorable.

    I usually peel a fresh orange (one continuous piece) and use it this way but the dried would be much easier and maybe more flavorful??

    I love your dried stuff – it’s on my someday list behind pressure canner, smoke house, cider press, cheese press, and on and on….

  2. Just today, minutes before I read your post, I trundled home from the thrift store in my small rural town cradling an only slightly used dehydrator within my excited hands! Can’t wait to try out some of your recipes … dried beets for soups, dried oranges for marinades. Yahoo!

    (I am sometimes concerned with the exuberance that springs forth from my soul in regard to canning and preserving. I honestly think I need to get out more. 😀 )

  3. Im going to have to dry some oranges, great idea. I have a venison stew recipe that I make that calls for a whole bottle of red wine and a whole orange. While I havent made it in a long time, I know I dont always have oranges on hand to use like that. I bet they would work great in that stew. Hmmmm now you have me thinking….

  4. I dry apples all the time. We just eat them.

    Orange slices make good iced tea, and sangria. they would be good in a duck sauce, or in carrots w butter and orange slices. you could also chop them up and sprinkle them on candied sweet pototatoes, before baking, or in an orange marenge pie.

  5. I used clementine dust in a marinade for salmon with great results (http://eatingfloyd.blogspot.com/2011/02/spice-rack-challenge-february-citrus.html) and also include it in dry rubs for poultry and fish. The clementine dust mixed with some wild garlic dust and sprinkled on scallops to be pan seared or broiled is tasty too.

    I also like to crunch up the dried orange wheels and toss them in salads and they’re good in granola that’s got ginger, cinnamon, sesame oil and seeds in the mix. Chopped macadamias don’t hurt in there either!

  6. I use dried citrus in my brine for turkey. Water, salt, brown sugar, lots of dried orange, lemon, and lime, couple of bay leaves and some fresh herbs (especially thyme).
    Dried key lime is killer in a cup of tea.

    • Dede, love the sound of this. Have dehidrated lime zest but not lime (although lemon is another fave!). WIll keep our eyes out for a sale and be all over this 🙂

      • I’ve been brining my turkeys like this for several years, overnight. Then roast them breast-side down. The best turkey ever, ever, ever LOL. I hope you come back and say what you think when you try it 😉

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