Blood Orange Recipes
Blood oranges are mostly grown in Italy, Spain and California through the winter months, meaning that they are in season right now but they won't be around for much longer. As the name suggests, they are oranges. But the main difference is that the flesh is crimson. You can’t necessarily tell from the skin as it looks much the same as regular oranges, although you can sometimes see a red tinge. They are sweet with a particularly intense flavour and a hint of raspberry. They can be used in many different recipes, in salads, paired with meat and fish, used in desserts, drinks and cocktails. We've picked a few of our favourite recipes where they are the star of the show.
Mackerel, blood orange, chorizo & walnut salad
190g cooking chorizo, chopped
2-3 blood oranges (or regular oranges)
2 red onions, sliced
3 mackerel fillets
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Pinch of sugar
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
50g chopped walnuts
Put a frying pan over a medium-high heat and fry the chorizo for 6 minutes or until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon onto kitchen paper. Meanwhile, slice off the peel and pith from the oranges (or regular ones), then cut out the segments.
Discard some fat from the pan, then fry the red onions for 7 minutes until soft. Add to the kitchen paper. In a bowl, toss the onions and chorizo with the rocket. Fry the mackerel fillets, skin-side down, for 3-4 minutes until crisp, then turn over and fry for 2 minutes more.
Mix the Dijon mustard, a pinch of sugar and red wine vinegar, then whisk in the extra-virgin olive oil and chopped walnuts. Toss through the salad, then serve on 4 plates. Break the mackerel into large flakes and scatter on top. Enjoy!
Vanilla cheesecake with blood oranges and caramel
Vegetable oil for greasing
200g Hobnob biscuits
50g roasted chopped hazelnuts
110g unsalted butter, melted
360g full-fat cream cheese
175g soured cream
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
175g caster sugar
3 large free-range eggs
50g plain flour
For the topping
8-10 blood oranges, 100g caster sugar, 30g unsalted butter, Splash rum, Cointreau or brandy, Pinch sea salt flakes, 75ml double cream
Lightly oil a 20cm loose bottom cake tin. Whizz the biscuits and hazelnuts in a food processor until very finely ground. With the motor running, pour in the butter with a pinch of salt, then whizz until the mixture looks like wet sand.
Tip some of the mixture into the oiled cake tin. Using your fingers and a metal spoon, flatten the biscuit mixture onto the base, then start to build up the sides, adding extra mixture and working it up the tin to form thin walls. Once you’ve used up all the mixture, chill the base in the fridge. Heat the oven to 160°C/140°C fan/gas 3.
To make the filling, put the cream cheese, mascarpone, soured cream, vanilla paste and 175g sugar in a mixing bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until smooth and runny. Whisk in the eggs, then sift over the plain flour and whisk that in. Pour the mixture into the chilled biscuit case, then transfer to the oven, on a baking sheet, and bake for 50-60 minutes until set around the edges with a good wobble in the middle. Remove from the oven, cool and chill overnight.
For the topping, cut off the orange peel with a sharp knife, then cut out the segments, reserving the juices – it’s best to do this over a sieve in a bowl. Put the sugar in a heavy-based pan and heat very gently until the sugar has dissolved – don’t stir it. If it starts to caramelise too quickly in patches, use a fork to disperse the patches and redistribute the sugar. Once the sugar’s melted, turn up the heat slightly and cook to a rich golden-red caramel. Remove from the heat quickly and stir in the butter and liqueur. It will spit, so be careful. Add the salt, then stir in the cream.
Transfer the caramel to a bowl, add 3 tbsp reserved juice from the oranges, then leave to cool (you can add more juice if the caramel sets too firmly as it cools). Tip the orange wedges onto a few layers of kitchen paper, then pat gently with more kitchen paper to dry them slightly.
Remove the cheesecake from the fridge 30 minutes before serving. Ease it out of its tin – if it resists, either run a mini blow-torch round the edge or put it very briefly into a warm oven to soften the butter in the crust. Transfer to a serving plate. Just before serving, pile the orange wedges on top, drizzle over the caramel, then slice and serve.
Blood Orange Salsa - great with steak or chicken in tacos
3 blood oranges, peeled and cut into segments
1 orange, peeled and cut into segments
Zest of one blood orange
1 red onion finely chopped
1 bunch coriander, finely chopped
1 tablespoon jalapeno, finely chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
juice of ½ lime
salt and pepper
Combine all the ingredients. Season with salt and pepper and let sit for 20 minutes. Enjoy!
Blood Orange Caramel Sauce - perfect for pancakes and ice cream
90g caster sugar
1 tablespoon honey
Pinch of salt
1 blood orange
150ml double cream