Orange Nutrition

Orange nutrition
Orange nutrition

Interesting facts and recipes

Nutritional Power Food
Oranges have so many benefits and I consider them a Powerfood.
They have a wealth of nutrients including vitamin C, vitamin A precursors, calcium, potassium, and pectin. For a complete list of its nutrients and calories go to  calories in an orange.

Interesting Orange Facts:

  • Oranges are the largest citrus crop in the world.
  • Brazil produces more oranges than any other country.
  • Navel Oranges are named after the belly button shape near the bottom!
  • About 25 billion oranges are grown each year in America.
  • In the 18th Century British sailors took sauerkraut and citrus fruits on the ships to prevent scurvy.
  • Florida produces about 70 percent of the total U.S. crop, and 90 percent of its production goes to make juice.
  • In Queen Victoria’s day, oranges were given as Christmas gifts in England.
  • Did you know that the color orange came from the orange fruit?
  • Two most common varieties of oranges are Navel and Valencia oranges.
  • Orange is the world’s third favorite flavor after chocolate and vanilla.

History of the Orange

Oranges where first grown in southeast Asia, northeastern India and southern China and were first cultivated in China around 2500 BC.

In the first century AD, Romans brought young orange trees all the way from India to Rome. North Africa began growing oranges in the 1st century AD.

Christopher Columbus brought orange seeds in 1493 across the Atlantic Ocean to Spain’s Canary Islands to Haiti, where he planted orange orchards. By 1518 oranges were introduced to Panama and Mexico, and a little later Brazil started growing orange trees.

America’s first orange trees were planted in Florida in 1513 by Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon.

Growing Oranges

They are a tropical to semitropical, small evergreen flowering trees growing to about 5 to 8 meters tall. Evergreen means they produce flowers and fruit all the same time.

Oranges are either sweet or bitter but as we know most of us eat only the sweet oranges. The most popular sweet varieties are Valencia, Navel, Persian variety and blood orange.

Warm weather can cause the orange skin to re-green but it will still taste good.

Orange peels contain many volatile oil glands in pits. Interior flesh is composed of segments, called carpels, made up of numerous fluid-filled vesicles that are actually specialized hair cells.

Selection and Storage

1. In the northern hemisphere orange fruit season begins in October and lasts until February.
2. The bigger the navel in an orange, the sweeter it will be.
3. Buy fresh fruits that are firm, yet yield to gentle pressure.
4. Fresh oranges have bright color, no wrinkles on the skin and feel heavy for their size.
5. Avoid overly soft oranges with spots and mold.
Oranges can be kept at room temperature for a week or so and but keep well for up to two weeks in the refrigerator. Keep them loose in the fruit container and place in the cool area away from excessive moisture, as they tend to get mold easily.

1. Store freshly squeezed orange juice inside the freezer compartment for later use.
2. Store dried orange zest in a cool, dry place in an airtight glass container away from moisture.
3.  Moro oranges are also called blood oranges because the pulp is bright red.

Orange Cautions:

Insecticide is sprayed over orange crops. It is important to at the very least wash the oranges in cold running water before use. Better is to wash them in a fruit and vegetable rinse. Organic oranges do not have these chemicals and are best suited for zest preparation.

For those susceptible to foodborne illness, you may need to avoid drinking unpasteurized or fresh-squeezed juice that could contain bacteria. Try sticking to pasteurized juices.

Preparation and Serving tips

It is simple to eat a fresh orange anytime or anywhere. Be sure to wash them under running water to remove surface dirt and any pesticide residues, then peel the skin and yum!

Making fresh orange juice at home is so easy and much better than those commercial drinks that may contain preservatives and artificial coloring. Oranges will produce more juice when warmer, so always juice them when they are at room temperature. You can roll the orange under the palm of your hand on a flat surface will also help to extract more juice. Also, it is best to drink the juice at room temperature.

The outermost part of the rind grated using zester to produce orange zest, which is tasty. It is important that you use an organic orange as this is where all the pesticides will be.

There is no orange waste because it is all biodegradable. Courtesy Care2

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