Dried orange peels can be used in a variety of ways, from infusion oil to potpourri. You can add another dimension to your favorite dish or dessert, or create beautiful homemade gifts from the shells. It's pretty easy to dehydrate them and you can do this in the oven or at room temperature, depending on how long you have.
Method 1 of 2: Dehydrating the husks
Step 1. Wash the oranges
Use a fruit wash solution to clean the skins and remove wax or pesticides. Put only a small amount into the fruit and rub it well into the skin. Then rinse well with running water. If you don't have a fruit cleaning solution, wash the orange in hot water to dissolve the wax.
Step 2. Peel the oranges.
Dry the fruit and peel each one by hand with a sharp knife or a vegetable peeler. Remove as much of the white crumb as you can, as it has a very bitter taste. Just scrape the crumb of the shell with a knife or spoon.
Step 3. Cut the shells into equal pieces
Depending on your purpose for orange peels, it might be a good idea to cut them into large chunks (for a potpourri) or thin strips (for infusion oils). Regardless of the objective, the pieces must be the same so that they dehydrate at the same speed.
Remember that the husks can always be cut into small pieces or ground up after dehydrating them
Step 4. Spread them out on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper
Place a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet, then place the skins in a single layer without overlapping them.
Step 5. Bake the skins for 30 to 60 minutes at 90 °C
The oven should be at the lowest possible temperature, which is normally 90 °C. Check it often to see if it's not burning. They'll be ready when they're stiff and start to curl. Remove the pan from the oven and let the skins cool completely.
Another option is to leave the skins on exposed baking sheets at room temperature for several days to dehydrate. Mix them once a day
Step 6. Grind dry husks if desired
If you want to use orange peel powder for marinades, flavored salts or sugar scrub products, you can grind the peels in a coffee grinder or food processor. Otherwise, leave them in strips or pieces.
Step 7. Store them in the refrigerator in a closed container for up to three months
A jar or Tupperware are good options for storing the shells, and they will last up to three months in the fridge. You can use this method to dehydrate the peel of other citrus fruits, including lemon and lime.
Method 2 of 2: Using dehydrated orange peels
Step 1. Add the dried husks to a tea
Put one or two strips of dried orange peel into a cup of your favorite tea. The fruit flavor will be delicious especially in green or black tea.
Step 2. Infuse an oil with peel strips
Put ¼ cup (60 ml) of oil (such as coconut oil or olive oil) in a jar and add some dehydrated strips. The more you add, the more intense the fruit flavor. Place a snug lid on the jar and let the oranges soak in the oil for a week.
Use the oil infused in a homemade salad dressing, drizzle vegetables and bake them, or use in your favorite baked goods recipe
Step 3. Flavor the salt with crushed orange peel and herbs
Add the ground husk and dried thyme or rosemary to a jar filled with your favorite salt. Mix all the ingredients well and use the salt to add dimension to your next meal. This is also a great gift idea.
Step 4. Use the husks in a potpourri
Fill a closed container with the dehydrated husks, cinnamon stick, nutmeg, cloves, dehydrated flowers and a few drops of essential oils such as cloves, oranges or cinnamon. Let it sit for three days, shaking the container a few times a day to strengthen the aroma. Then place the potpourri in a pretty vase or bowl and display it in your home.
Step 5. Make a sugar scrub product
Combine 1 cup (230 g) sugar, ½ cup (120 ml) coconut oil and 1 tablespoon (10 g) ground dried orange peel in a bowl. Mix well to combine the ingredients, transfer the mixture to a jar and cover. Use to exfoliate your body in the bath for smooth, orange-scented skin.