Monday, December 10, 2012

Cranberry Orange Juice

This morning when I did my weekly fridge look through, I found 2 bags of cranberries that needed to be used. From one I made my stand-by cranberry sauce. The other I planned to use for more cranberry relish, but as they sat there in all roly-poly glory on my countertop, I realized that if I juiced them, my kids might actually consume them.

It's tough to be brilliant, especially when it involves peeling a bag full of citrus that seem to have no desire in this world to lose their skins. Nevertheless I persevered. I'm glad I did because what I got was a pretty little juice with a good girl kind of a bite. I liked it. The kids and Kip wanted a little sugar and I gave it to them--figuring that it was still a good turn better than Ocean Spray (fingers crossed).

I know that juicing requires a special tool (like this one: Breville BJE200XL Compact Juice Fountain 700-Watt Juice Extractor), but in the winter it's something we do once a week or so when the oranges, etc. start to sell for really cheap (right now I can get them for $1.50/3 lb at Aldi and/or Ruler foods).

And now I will give you what wasn't supposed to sound like an advertisement for juicing, but that sounds like an advertisement for juicing (when all I really want to do is explain why the heck I bother posting juice recipes here now and again). Supposedly juicing allows you to absorb nutrients more efficiently from your food (because there isn't all that refuse to slow the nutrients down or carry them out of your body). You don't get that from store-bought juices because they are pasteurized (heated), which kills many nutrients and because they are stored for a long time, which kills nutrients. Is juicing the cure all for your December? Well, um, it depends on how many cookies you've eaten. But let me say this: I don't know if juicing will fix all your health problems, but a couple of times when I have had a cold, I've juiced a bunch of oranges and felt better the next day. Yes, that is a little witch-doctory. However, if nothing else, juicing allows you (or your kids/husband) to get some extra fruits/veggies into your/their diet, and for us, it allows a nice, comfortable, safe way to introduce unusual fruits.

And yes it is the best OJ ever, so it's just a bonus if you can sneak in some other stuff too (carrots, pomegranate, cranberry). It's a good foil for the 17,000 cookies my kids ate this weekend. Amen.

Cranberry Orange Juice
Makes 3-4 C juice
Prep time: 20 minutes
Juicing time: 10 minutes
Cost: $2.33
cranberries: .83, tangerines: 1.50

1 12-oz bag cranberries (ours probably ended up as less, since we had several wilty cranberries that got thrown out)
3 lb bag tangerines or oranges (we used tangerines because that's what I had)
2 Tbsp sugar (optional)

Wash your cranberries. Peel your oranges.

Juice them per the instructions of your juicer.

Taste. If it's too sour for you, just give it a second and think about it. You might decide you kind of like it--I did. I loved it. In fact, I'm craving more right now. Unfortunately I added sugar to the rest so my kids would drink it. However, if you taste and think and it's still got too much kick for you, you can add a bit of sugar. 2 Tbsp was plenty for us (and we are not exactly Spartan in our sugar usage).

We came out with about 4 cups of juice. It's not a lot, but since the produce was very cheap, it still came out at a good price for fresh juice.




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