Freshly squeezed orange juice has got to be one of the most thirst-quenching drinks you guzzle. There’s just no comparison between the fresh stuff and juice from a carton! From the 5kg of fruit in this box, you should be able to squeeze out about 2.5litres of lovely fresh juice – that's just over 16 x 150ml glasses (and a 150ml glass equals one of your 5 a day!). This box is a great one for those who don’t have fancy electric juicers as it's easy to extract juice from citrus fruits manually. Just halve the fruit and squeeze into jug or bowl, or use a lovely old-fashioned citrus reamer or press. They don’t use up electricity and they don’t use up loads of space – and they're cheap.
Country of Origin - Italy/Spain/Greece/South Africa/Morocco
Class - Minimum Class 2
One of our orange growers during the European season is Giangiacomo Borghese. He has 85 hectares of flat Sicilian land, perfect for citrus trees. His farm lies to the east of the island. “My orange groves on the north side lookout at Mount Etna, it's a very beautiful view,” describes Giangiacomo, not making us jealous in the least. “My mother, Maria Carla, has been growing oranges, grapefruit and lemons here since 1955,” says Giangiacomo. “Sicily has the best climate for citrus fruit – very regular weather, good conditions.” The mother and son Borghese team will be supplying us with juicy Valencia oranges and grapefruit (Giangiacomo's favourite), which will bring a little ray of Sicilian sunshine into our boxes.
Our citrus is from Europe for the majority of the year, apart from some between June and October which is from further a field.
Oranges are traditionally thought to be useful only for their reliable source of vitamin C; this is essential for resisting infection. However in oranges this vitamin is combined with flavonoids, which helps the body's overall defences. The fruit may block the possible transformation of nitrates and nitrites in foods to nitrosamines, which are thought to cause stomach cancer. You can help reduce your blood cholesterol by eating oranges, due to the pectin (a soluble fibre) they contain. The flavonoids in oranges can improve the strength of your small blood vessels, aiding capillary circulation.
If you want to use the zest, simply rinse them and grate away, since the oranges are unwaxed. People find different ways to peel an orange; one alternative is to slice the orange and eat it straight from the skin. Keep in a cool place in your kitchen or larder until they are at the ripeness you prefer. Less ripe fruit contains more pectin. Peeled or stored oranges quickly lose their vitamin C.