What to do with all this citrus?!

So you grabbed a few too many extra oranges and grapefruits and lemons (and some finger limes, and some satsumas…), and rather than watch them go bad, we want to provide you with some ideas on how to reduce waste. You’ll also get to enjoy citrus in a lot of new ways!

There are many guides and recipes across the internet (like this one by our friends at Grow Forage Cook Ferment), so here are a few ideas to get your creative and citrus juices flowing.

This is too much citrus to eat! How can I preserve them?

  • Margaritas, anyone?

    Juice your limes (or grapefruits if you’re into palomas), put the juice into a container in your freezer, and you’re ready for Cinco de Mayo (or just 5pm).

  • Citrus curd

    Zest your citrus, then juice it, mix in some sugar, eggs, and butter and you’ve now got a tangy, sweet pudding-like treat to use as a topping or to eat by the spoonful.

  • Salted/fermented citrus

    This is a unique way to preserve extra citrus. Salted citrus (also known as preserved citrus) is very useful in cooking, especially for North African dishes like tagines.

  • Dehydrating

    Great for trail mixes, baking, or a snack on its own, dehydrating citrus is a low-labor way to use those extras.

  • Then there are the classic options: freeze lemon or lime juice for homemade lemonade in the summer; create a marmalade or preserves; make a lemon bar (or try a different citrus); or peel, segment and can your citrus.

Don’t throw it away! Ways to reduce waste

  • Candied peels

    For a homemade sugary treat, all you need is your citrus peels, sugar, water and a saucepan for boiling. Works great for all citrus types.

  • Cooking zest

    Citrus zest keeps very well for future recipes, whether it’s frozen or dried. Make sure you’ve got a good microplane (cheese shredders work in a pinch, too) and start zesting!

  • Vitamin C powder

    Did you know the peel of an orange has almost twice as much vitamin C as the same amount of orange fruit? Take your peels and dry them out (on your counter or in a dehydrator), then when they’re extra crispy pulverize them in a blender or grinder.

  • Freshen up the home

    Boil some peels with a mix of water and spices (like cinnamon or allspice) to fill your house with a fresh winter scent.

  • Cleaner

    Take peels OR post-juicing fruit pulp, fully submerge in vinegar for ~2 weeks, then strain and dilute 50/50 with water. Add this mixture to a spray bottle and you’ve got a fresh, all-natural cleaner! (Advanced level: create a citrus enzyme cleaner by fermenting the peels/waste. A web search will bring up several recipes.)

  • A few other options: mix peels with alcohol then do some straining and evaporating to create citrus essential oil; use that essential oil or excess lemon juice to create your own Goo Gone; add peels to your trash can or garbage disposal for an easy deodorizer; submerge peels in vodka for 4 days to a month, strain and mix with simple syrup (or citrus syrup!) for homemade limoncello or triple sec.

More Co-op News

Compostable Bags

The Co-op has been asked if compostable plastic bags are a viable alternative to the standard plastic bags offered in the produce and meat departments. 

For several reasons, compostable bags are not in line with the Co-op’s goals and standards. 

Not compostable at home

Sustainability Update: Energy efficiency and zero waste

Energy Efficiency
We are happy to announce that we are a member of the Energy Trust of Oregon’s Strategic Energy Management program. This is a free program available to customers of Avista and Pacific Power, which offers awesome incentives including a paid internship!

How to stay sustainable with paper products

Have you thought about how sustainable your paper home products are? While the use of single-use plastics has (rightfully) been criticized, some products are made to be single-use - like toilet paper, paper towels, and napkins. With these products, it’s best to examine sustainability by looking at what goes into their production.

Board elections are open!

We are grateful for the engaged community that supports the Ashland Food Co-op. We're a grocery store owned by you (with a few thousand of your friends). But your ownership isn't just coupons and discount; you help shape the future of the Co-op through the election of the Board of Directors.

This year, seven candidates are nominated for four board positions: two will serve a three-year term; one will serve a two-year term; and one will serve a one-year term. Additionally, the current board has proposed three by-law changes for approval.

Farm Tour on the Shelves

The Farm Tour shines a spotlight on Southern Oregon - it represents the full range of products grown in the Rogue Valley. The Farm Tour isn't until July 14, but here's a list of tour activities for participating farms that are also on the shelves at the Ashland Food Co-op. Get an early taste of quality local goods!

Planning for Summer... and Smoke

By Emile Amarotico, General Manager

If we are lucky, we’ll only have another seven week smoke intrusion this summer. If we are not, we could be the next Paradise. In less than 13 hours, last November’s Camp Fire wiped out nearly 19,000 structures and more than 80 lives. With community help, we were able to raise over $14,000 to support Chico Natural Foods Co-op’s efforts to feed some of the nearly 20,000 displaced Paradise residents.

The Co-op's "Secret Garden"

Did you know the Co-op employees have a small garden on our campus? Planning and management falls on our fantastic Co-op volunteer: Henry Herting.

Below, Henry shares some background on the garden, what it’s used for, and some additional tales from over the years.


Originally, the need for a kitchen garden arose from having a kitchen classroom in which culinary classes were being held. Visiting chefs have always been invited to use the garden for any ingredients they may have forgotten or items they could use as garnish for their dishes.

 

Tips for a Sustainable Kitchen

By Mahlea Rasmussen, Education Coordinator

Outside of work I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. I find it a soothing space to create nourishing meals and lasting memories. I find it essential to be as eco-friendly as possible and a few changes can transform your kitchen into a sustainable center of your home.

Earth Day Bulk Sale! April 17-21

Save money while working towards a more sustainable shopping experience! The Co-op bulk department is a great "first stop" for your grocery lists - everything from hummus mix to local honey to pet food is available. Plus there's less waste, all the way from shipping to ended up in your shopping cart. 

Check out a quick tour below:

Film festival giveaway

Enter your name and email below to be entered to win two film vouchers for the 2019 Ashland Independent Film Festival.

No purchase necessary. Giveaway is not endorsed or sponsored by AIFF. US residents only. Entry will be closed at 5pm PT on Monday, April 15.


The state of plastics

Many Co-op owners and shoppers have shared their interest in reducing plastic usage in the store. From bioplastics, to compostable plastics to recycling options, the Ashland Food Co-op continues to research what works best as we move towards our goal of being a zero waste store. Here is where we stand.

Food waste at the Co-op

By Rianna Koppel, Sustainability Coordinator

How many times in the past month have you reached back in the fridge to snack on some fresh strawberries only to discover… mold?! In the United States, 40% of food is wasted every year. Luckily, how we address food waste can have a major impact. According to Paul Hawkin’s Drawdown, reducing food waste is #3 on the list of best ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. At the Co-op, we use the EPA’s Food Recovery Hierarchy as a guide to bettering our own practices.