Grown Healthy: Orange Fun and Salad

posted in: grown healthy | 4

We love oranges and every winter season we get boxes of oranges from my father/grandfather.  If you have read any of my other grown healthy posts you will see that my father always provides us with fruits and vegetables. My father loves u-pick ranches and orchids and knows most of the local ones by heart. So when he visits he never comes empty handed, instead he bring boxes and boxes of fruits and vegetables. We eat so much oranges during this season that our finger nails are stained orange.

My father has showed us how to love organic and seasonal fruits and vegetables. Organic fruits and vegetables that are picked during season are always sweet, crunchy, and oh so tasty. Once you have had a taste of this it is hard to enjoy store bought and off season fruits and vegetables.

Whenever one of us is sick my mother always reminds us to eat our oranges and this is because oranges help you fight against viral infections due to the fact that they are packed with polyphenols.

Where to Pick Oranges:

You can pick Satsuma mandarins yourself at Ann’s orchard. Located at 4595 Godley Road, Lincoln, CA 95648. Call before you come because they sell out fast. (916) 645-1496

Anatomy of an orange:

We are always curious about the anatomy of everything. The flavedo is filled with oil glands and is also known as zest. This is probably why zest tastes so good when added on top of any dish. Carpal is filled with the juice sacs. We love the juice sacs. This is the best part of an orange.


Orange Tea:

To make your own fresh orange tea you have to first make sure that the leaves and the oranges were not sprayed. We got ours from our neighbor which was totally organic. All you need to do is wash the leaves and oranges well. Cut the peel into slices and rip some leaves. Put orange peel and leaves into a pot and fill with hot water. Let it stand for a couple of minutes before you drink it. My children love this tea.


Juicing Oranges:

We love freshly squeezed oranges. They are simply the best. Since my father brings us boxes of oranges we do not want them to go to waste so we always juice them. We like to drink them just as they are but if you get a batch of oranges that are not as sweet as you would like them to be then you could add your freshly squeezed oranges into your smoothies.


Orange detox water:

Detox waters will keep you hydrated, help your body flush out toxins, and help you lose weight by making you feel fuller longer. The reason why my children and I love this water is because it tastes so good and it encourages us to drink more water. I mean who wouldn’t want to drink a cup of beautiful water full of fruits and herbs? All you need is some slices of oranges, lemon, and some mint leaves. Put this in the fridge for a couple of hours and enjoy. My children love drinking this.


Orange Face Mask:

Stop! Do not throw away your orange peels. Did you know that orange peels have more nutrients than the actual fruit?  Yep, so take advantage of this and dry your peels. Why spend money on store bought face masks when you have ingredients that you would throw away anyways?  To get started leave your orange peels to dry on the counter on top of paper towels for a couple of days. When dry, use a grinder to grind the orange peels. Then simply add honey to your grinded peels. You could add yogurt as well. Use your fingers or a clean paint brush to apply the mask. Leave on your face for 10 minutes and rinse.


Orange Crafts:

Orange peel shapes:

We love to do crafts, especially if it is about oranges. Now this first craft uses the orange peels. Another great reason to save your orange peels. 🙂 Draw a shape on the orange peel and then cut it out using scissors. If you want to hang the shapes then make a hole in the shape and put a string through it. Then leave the shapes out to dry.



Drawing Oranges: My son enjoyed looking and drawing the oranges. Sometimes the best way to see the details of something is to draw it.


 Painting with oranges and leaves:

Cut the orange in half. All you need is an orange, leaves, green paint, and orange paint. We loved seeing the prints the leaves and the orange left.


Orange Salad:

There are so many different ways and combinations you could do when adding oranges to a salad. For this salad we added oranges, strawberries, coconut ships, dried orange peels, lemon juice, and micro arugula. We love simple salad recipes that our children can put together and make. We think salads are something that anyone can make and enjoy. Place different fruits, vegetables, herbs, and nuts out and let your children come up with their own salad combinations.


Where to admire oranges: Forestiere Underground Gardens:

During the summer there is a great reason to stop by Fresno. Even if your car thermometer is showing that it is 100 degrees Fahrenheit there is a cool place for you to spend a couple of hours. The underground gardens was built by a true citrus enthusiast who came across the Atlantic chasing the dream of having a citrus orchard. That dream brought Forestiere all the way to Fresno, California. However, when one of the locals sold him 80 acres of land which were not suitable for citrus growing (hard pan underneath the surface) he was still determined to make it work out. He started digging out the hardpan and started creating him own private underground world. He kept digging for the next 40 years. He built 50 rooms and he had hoped to open a resort for those who wanted to get away from the Fresno heat. He planted orange, grapefruit, lemon, grapevines, and other trees 20 feet underground. The most amazing tree in the underground garden was the grafted hybrid that had at one time 7 different types of fruits. There is so much to see and learn about the talented man who built this unique underground garden. You’ll have to see it for yourself to truly be able to admire Forestiere underground garden.

Forestiere Underground Gardens is located at 5021 W. Shaw Ave, Fresno, Ca. It is opened Wednesday through Sunday from 10 am until 3pm. Call (559)271-0734 for more information. They are not opened year-round. The cost is $14 adults, $12 seniors, $7 for those 5-17, and children 4 and under are free.

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4 Responses

  1. Love this! It’s great that you did a still life drawing! You could also make orange all purpose cleaner by soaking orange peels in vinegar for a few weeks then just strain the peels out.

  2. This is amazing, Irina! Once again you amaze me in how you went and created different project for your children while eating healthy and letting nothing go to waste! You also got some marvelous pictures.


    Thank you love. I love the idea of not letting anything go to waste. I have so much to learn and teach my children. I’m loving the journey. 🙂


    I’ll have to try the all purpose cleaner. Isn’t amazing how many things you can do with orange peels?

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