Orange — The Chi­nese apple

Anoth­er name for the orange is orange. The word orange orig­i­nat­ed from “apple from Chi­na”, which in turn indi­cates the ori­gin of the fruit.

The orange belongs to the cit­rus fruits and is a vit­a­min bomb. There­fore, it is also ide­al for a healthy and bal­anced diet. Two oranges a day already cov­er the rec­om­mend­ed dai­ly require­ment of vit­a­min C.

Also inter­est­ing is that the fruit was also used to treat dis­eases in the past.

The ori­gin, prop­er­ties and his­to­ry of the orange

The orange has its ori­gin in Chi­na. Its name is also due to its ori­gin, because actu­al­ly the orange is also known as orange (apple from China).

The orange, like the tan­ger­ine or lemon, is a cit­rus fruit. In itself, the orange is actu­al­ly a cross between the tan­ger­ine and the grape­fruit. Numer­ous cit­rus fruits have only been cre­at­ed through crossbreeding.

The orange reached Europe by sea in the Mid­dle Ages. We have the Por­tuguese to thank for this, who dis­cov­ered the deli­cious fruit on their way to India in East Africa.

Mean­while, the orange is one of the most com­mon­ly grown cit­rus fruits. They are main­ly cul­ti­vat­ed in the trop­ics and sub­trop­ics. Right at the top here is Brazil. We source our oranges from the Mediter­ranean region, such as Spain.

The orange tree can grow up to 10 meters high and is ever­green. One tree can pro­duce up to 200 kg of fruit in a year. When ripe, the fruit has an orange peel on the out­side, which is waxy. From the inside, the skin is white and the tis­sue is spongy. The flesh of the orange con­sists of seg­ments sur­round­ed by the white spongy tis­sue. The flesh can have dif­fer­ent col­ors, for exam­ple, in blood orange it is dark red. The main sea­son for oranges is from Novem­ber to March. How­ev­er, they are avail­able all year round.

The ingre­di­ents of the orange

Oranges con­tain a lot of min­er­als and vit­a­mins and con­sist of 80 % of water. Par­tic­u­lar­ly note­wor­thy is the high amount of vit­a­min C. On 100 g of oranges are 50 mg of vit­a­min C. The dai­ly require­ment of vit­a­min C is offi­cial­ly 100 g. Thus, two oranges a day would cov­er the com­plete dai­ly require­ment of vit­a­min C.

In addi­tion to vit­a­min C, vit­a­mins of the B group and vit­a­min A are also found in the fruit. It also pro­vides min­er­als such as cal­ci­um, potas­si­um, mag­ne­sium, sodi­um and iron. In addi­tion to vit­a­mins and min­er­als, the orange also has numer­ous sec­ondary plant com­pounds, such as flavonoids and carotenoids.

The effect of oranges on our body

Oranges are ide­al for a healthy and bal­anced diet, as they are vit­a­min bombs. Espe­cial­ly in the win­ter time, when the fruit is par­tic­u­lar­ly pop­u­lar, it is impor­tant to take enough vitamins.

Already cen­turies ago, peo­ple rec­og­nized how valu­able oranges are for tra­di­tion­al med­i­cine, because the fruit is con­sid­ered an ancient rem­e­dy. At that time, they were used not only as a source of vit­a­min C, but also to treat dis­eases such as tuber­cu­lo­sis, heart dis­ease, high blood pres­sure and depression.

It is now proven that the orange is effec­tive against bac­te­ria and virus­es, can pre­vent can­cer and car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­eases, as well as ben­e­fit the psyche.

The con­tained vit­a­min C is par­tic­u­lar­ly impor­tant for our body, as it strength­ens our immune sys­tem and is impor­tant for bones and con­nec­tive tis­sue. In addi­tion, vit­a­min C sup­ports the absorp­tion of iron, which in turn is impor­tant for the trans­port of oxy­gen in the blood.

Against anx­i­ety, fatigue and stress, the orange, or orange essen­tial oil can also help. Essen­tial oils are used in aro­ma and scent ther­a­pies and are found in the peel of the orange.

Oranges in the kitchen

The deli­cious fruit is ver­sa­tile in the kitchen. For exam­ple, it can be made into orange mar­malade or orange sauce. The grat­ed peel is espe­cial­ly pop­u­lar for refin­ing cakes, cook­ies, muffins. But also in desserts such as orange cream, fruit sal­ad and tiramisu you can find the orange.

Prob­a­bly the best known use of the orange is pro­cess­ing the fruit into a refresh­ing orange juice or smoothie.

Pur­chase and stor­age of oranges

The qual­i­ty should be giv­en spe­cial atten­tion when buy­ing oranges. Good qual­i­ty is indi­cat­ed by a thick, healthy and undam­aged look­ing peel. It is bet­ter to keep your hands off shriv­eled oranges. The best way to test this is to hold the fruit in your hand and apply light pres­sure. A good orange yields slight­ly to light pres­sure and lies heav­i­ly in the hand.

Oranges must be stored in a cool and airy place. This way they will keep for a few weeks. It is impor­tant to check them dai­ly for rot­ten spots. To extend the shelf life of oranges, they can also be frozen or dried. How­ev­er, when freez­ing, it should be not­ed that the con­sis­ten­cy, taste and aro­ma will change. If you decide to dry the fruit, you should also remem­ber that dried fruit is unhealth­i­er, because the water is removed and the sug­ar con­tent increases.

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