The smell of oranges and cloves always reminds me of Christmas. When I was younger my mum showed me the Christmas tradition she used to do as a child in Scotland; putting cloves in oranges to create designs and a wonderful smell that wafts around the house and the festive feeling that comes with it. This year I thought I would try out other way to use oranges and cloves as ornaments on the tree. So here is how I dried out slices of oranges to use as homemade ornaments that smell amazing!!!
What you will need:
4-6 oranges (depending on how many slices you want, we have a 5ft tree and didn't need many)
Preheat the oven to 100 degrees Celsius (fan forced).
Roll out three long strips of paper towel; one on top of the other. This is for absorbing some of the juice before drying.
Start to cut your oranges, I did some thicker slices and some thiner ones. The thicker ones take longer to dry out.
Place all the slices on the paper towel and with two more strips of paper towel press down gently on the oranges to remove excess juice, this will help speed up the drying process.
On lined baking trays place all the slices, you can put them close together as they will shrink slightly. Then put them in the oven.
This is the long bit, they will take about three hours to dry out. Make sure you turn them every half hour so they dry out evenly. You may be tempted to turn up the heat but keep it at a low setting otherwise you will burn the oranges!
After they have dried out you may find a few are still slightly soft to touch in the middle, this is okay they will eventually dry out while on display.
I decided to hang mine on the tree and they look so good! The orange and the green look great together. All I did was thread a piece of floss and did a triple knot then trimmed the ends.
If you want to add some more oomph to your orange sliced you can always add some cloves. I used a skewer to poke holes in the orange rind so it was easier to put the cloves in without making a huge mess!
I also used the same skewer technique for creating the designs on the full oranges (first image).
Firstly poke the design into the orange with the skewer then wash it to get rid of the sticky orange juice. Insert the cloves and voila! Here are some of the designs I did, I tried to make them look like ornaments you would put on the tree.
You can put them anywhere as decoration, just make sure to put them on a plate or tray as they may leak.
Hope you are enjoying the festive season! I am loving coming up with and writing these fun posts!
Let me know what you think and do you have any suggestions of what you sort of posts you would like to see in the new year?