A little orange blossom water can refresh your outlook as well as your palate. These three recipes add zing to your day!
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Enjoy How Orange Blossom Water Benefits Your Health
What Is Orange Blossom Water?
Orange blossom water (sometimes called orange flower or bitter orange hydrosol) is the byproduct after essential oil has been distilled from making neroli or orange blossom oil.
What is neroli? Made from bitter orange tree blossoms, this is an essential oil valued for its calming and relaxing scent.
Orange blossom water has an intensely floral and citrus taste — almost like perfume.
And, like most fragrances, a little goes quite a long way: use too much and you've just ruined your drink or dish. Just the right amount, however, can balance sweetness, making the resulting recipe taste more complex and layered.
Like adding lemon or orange zest to your dishes, orange blossom water can also give your pastry, pie, or savory dishes a little zing!
Orange Blossom Water Uses
But the value of orange blossom water doesn’t end in the kitchen. A few great uses for this delicate product include:
- Use as a facial toner. It’s perfect for sensitive skin because it’s only mildly astringent.
- Add interest to adult beverages. It pairs especially well with gin.
- Try a drop in carrot juice. Carrots and orange blossom water blend together nicely.
- Make your iced water more refreshing. Sprinkle a few drops into your ice cube tray to jazz up your water.
- Take your dessert to another level. Sprinkle over classic ambrosia or fruit salad, then dust with cinnamon.
- Add to your hot drink. Try ¼ teaspoon in your hot chocolate, coffee, or mocha beverage.
- Put several drops into your air humidifier to gently scent the air. Flower waters are generally uplifting to the spirit.
- Jazz up your tea. Put a drop or two into chamomile or lemon verbena tea.
- Use as a daily perfume. Place a drop behind your ear for a subtle and natural cologne.
- Put a drop or two in your Warrior Blend chocolate smoothie. It’s up to you whether or not you also add in a little cinnamon!
Orange blossom water keeps a long time when tightly sealed and stored in a cool place. Refrigeration is not necessary.
Orange Blossom Water Benefits
Aside from its aromatherapy properties, orange blossom water mainly benefits the skin and the palate.
Some of its dermatological benefits include:
- Clears up the redness and irritation on sunburned skin. It’s mild enough to be used as an ingredient in skin care products made for sensitive skin.
- Moisturizes the skin. It makes the skin soft and glowing all day long when added to bathwater.
- Helps heal the wounds on pets faster. It’s gentle enough so you can use it to rinse your pet’s cuts and wounds to hasten the healing process.
- Conditions the hair. Aside from making your hair smell amazing, it also makes hair strong and shiny.
How to Make Orange Blossom Water at Home
While you can buy orange blossom water at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods, why not make your own at home?
If you have bitter orange flowers at home, you can make your own organic orange blossom oil or neroli and orange blossom water.
If you don’t have a distiller at home, you can use a pot with a lid and distilled water to make orange blossom water.
Follow the steps below to make the scented water:
What you need:
- 200 grams orange blossoms from the bitter orange tree
- 1.5 liters of distilled water
- 7 packs of ice cubes
- pot with a lid
- heatable glass bowl
- plastic tape
- glass or Mason jar
- Wash and drain the orange blossoms.
- Put a glass bowl in a pot and surround it with the petals. Add water into the pot.
- Seal the pot with its lid placed upside down and taped shut to stop the steam from escaping.
- Bring the water to a rolling boil then reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting.
- When the water begins to simmer, add a pack of ice cubes on the inverted lid.
- When the ice melts, wipe off with a napkin and add another batch of ice. Do this until all the water inside the pot has evaporated and condensed into the glass bowl.
- Once done, let the orange blossom water cool before transferring to a jar for storage.
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Orange Blossom Water Recipes to Refresh You Throughout the Day
1. Lemonade with Orange Blossom Water and Mint
Slightly layered flavors are complex but refreshing. Make your lemonade more fragrant and exciting by adding orange blossom water and mint!
Follow this quick recipe.
Yield: 5 cups
- 4 cups warm purified water
- 1/3 cup honey (can use agave nectar as a substitute)
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 sprigs fresh mint
- 1 tablespoon orange blossom water
- Add honey to warm water and stir to dissolve.
- Pour into a large glass jar; add lemon juice, lightly crushed mint leaves and orange blossom water. Chill.
- Serve over ice with a lemon or orange slice
2. White Coffee
Invented in Lebanon, this drink couldn't be simpler to make. It’s a clean and relaxing caffeine-free alternative to coffee.
People who can’t drink coffee due to medical or dietary restrictions can drink this hot beverage instead.
Yield: 1 serving
- 1 cup hot purified water
- 1/4 teaspoon orange blossom water
- 1 teaspoon honey; use orange blossom honey if available (can substitute with agave nectar)
- Combine all the ingredients.
- Stir and serve with an orange wedge or cinnamon stick.
You can also add ice to this drink to enjoy an iced white coffee on hot days!
3. Nectarine, Clementine, and Orange Blossom Drink
A trio of citrus flavors to wake up your morning...or anytime. Add ice for a refreshing summer drink!
Yield: 1 serving
- 2 nectarines, peeled, pitted
- 3 clementines, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon orange blossom water
- Run citrus through the juicer and pour into a glass.
- Stir in orange blossom water and serve immediately.
Since we’re trying recipes, here’s another one worth making, Apple Orange Cider from Sunwarrior:
If you haven’t tried using orange blossom water, it’s high time to give it a try. It’s versatile enough to use on the skin, to quench your thirst, and even on your pets!
Water is versatile! Give rose water a try too!
What other uses of orange blossom water do you know of? Share them in the comments section below!
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on March 9, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.