Cooking & Drinking with Oranges and lemons

Banish the January cold (and colds) with loads of in season citrus packed with fresh, reviving flavour and plenty of vitamim C.  It’s easy to be creative and use citrus in your cooking (and drinking). Marmalade is the obvious one, but spice up your G&T, make salads, perk up your stews or enjoy a refreshing pudding using oranges and lemons while they are at their best.

We have new season’s Seville Oranges which are grown with marmalade in mind.  For a dark, gungy and indulgent marmalade, my Mum recommends this Dark Muscovado & Whisky Marmalade recipe.  The Sevilles are unwaxed, so tend not to keep for so long, so best to use them up as soon as you get them in.  Seville Oranges don’t just have to be for marmalade, you can also use them as a sauce base for meat dishes, add some rind to your stews, or a slice in your Chilgrove G&T

The Chilgrove Fizz

In the cold winter months, the difference a twist of fresh orange peel can make will truly astonish.

  • 1 measure of Chilgrove Dry Gin
  • 1 measure of fresh pink grapefruit juice
  • 1 measure of fresh lemon juice
  • English Sparkling Wine (Champagne or Prosecco will suffice!)

Shake the gin and juice well with ice. Pour gently through the top of a ¾ full flute of sparkling wine. Garnish with a thin twist of orange peel.

I love citrus fruit as part of your meal, from a light and simple blood orange and Hairspring Watercress Salad (The mackerel makes it into a proper meal), to a hearty stew or tagine.

Widely used in Middle Eastern recipes and Indian curries, preserved lemons add a rich, lemon hit without the acidic tartness.  They are simple to make yourself, but they need a month in the jar before you can use them. We have them in stock if you fancy a lamb tagine this weekend.

Orange in syrup is a very simple pudding but a family favourite at this time of year. Here’s Nigel Slater’s version of Caramel Orange which you can top with roasted almonds if you want to.

Finally, nothing tops a Hot Toddy to finish your day: a comforting, warming drink that combines honey, lemon and whisky for the perfect winter medicine. Put 1tsp of honey and a measure of whisky in a mug or heatproof glass. Add two cloves and half a cinnamon stick then top up with just-off-the-boil water. Stir in a slice of lemon and just enough lemon juice to balance the sweetness of the honey. Drink