Bloody Delicious – Get it?

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At least I didn’t say "orange you glad….?"

Blood oranges are my winter equivalent of summer’s heirloom tomatoes.
They’re at their best just once a year, which means I always feel the
need to cram as many as possible into my mouth and the mouths of
others. Sometimes I wish I felt the same way about navels and
valencias, but alas, I do not. Is it a color bias? Gosh I hope not.

Blood oranges get their color from something called Anthocyanin, a
pigment that’s usually found in flowers and other fruits and
vegetables. It’s what gives petals that deep red, blue or purple color,
and for some reason Mother Nature decided to include it in this citrus
variety. Thank you, girl!

There are three types of blood oranges: Tarocco, Sanguinello and Moro.
The moro is grown here in California and is said to be the sweetest of
the three varieties. For me the most exciting part, aside from their
flavor, is the first time you cut into the orange. Deep crimson
droplets leak out, giving way to dark flesh that can take you by
suprise if you’re not expecting it. The colors of blood oranges can
vary from crop to crop, and even inside an individual fruit you may get
a beautiful uniform hue or speckles of red, purple and orange.

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But the best part is the flavor. Less acidic and "fruitier" than
regular oranges, they’re pleasantly sweet with notes of raspberries and
blueberries. To me they taste like fruit punch, which is why I love the
juice in cocktails and mixed drinks (geez Matt, must it always be about
the booze?)
Of course you can use blood oranges the same way you’d use
standard oranges, but that beautiful gorgeous color will affect
whatever you are preparing.

Not like that’s a bad thing :)

Comments

  1. says

    Your on-white image is resplendent! It looks like the red is splotchy in those, very interesting, almost like they are mosaic (hybrid) and not all just blood orange but a mix. I wonder if I can even find these in my local non-Whole Foods grocery store. If I do am going to give them a try!

  2. says

    Oops. I never knew that there are three different types of blood oranges. That’s what happens to you when you reside in Scotland/Estonia and not somewhere much, much sunnier and warmer..
    Great pictures, again.

  3. says

    How about Cara Caras? My wife’s folks have a number of varieties of oranges (navels, valencias, blood included) but my favorite this time of year are the cara caras. (I’m not sure what variety they have of blood orange, but it is actually my least favorite to eat, I’ll have to get them a Moro.) Seems like they have all the same great properties of the bloods but of lighter flesh and different origin. I don’t think Wikipedia has info on them yet…..

  4. says

    love that first shot…am a big fan of blood oranges too….and in my perfect world it’s always all about the booze… my altime favourite accompaniment to blood orange juice is a healthy measure of campari

  5. says

    The Republic of Tea came out with Cranberry Blood Orange, which takes the ouch from their $10 price tag. And speaking of $10 price tags- a blood orange mojito will satisfy even the most ardent purist!

    I’m with you, cutting into the fruit is often the best part.

  6. Lorie says

    Lovely pictures. My local grocer has blood oranges right now. I’m enjoying now and am going to juice and freeze to drizzle over my summer fresh squeezed margaritas!

  7. J says

    omg, thank you for this post. i just peeled an orange and got freaked out b/c it was black in the inside (i thought a creature was growing). I’ve heard of blood oranges, but didn’t know what they looked like.

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