ABOUT THIS ARTICLE (use with mug) This is part of a bi-weekly series with content exclusive to Gulf Coast Media. Kitti Cooper has over 10 years of agricultural experience, and her dedication extends …
The holiday season is upon us, and what better way to add a burst of freshness to your celebrations than by incorporating citrus fruit into your gift-giving traditions?
Citrus fruits offer a world of possibilities for thoughtful and homemade presents. Let's explore some delightful ideas to infuse your Christmas with the vibrant essence of citrus.
Before you start, remember to only use peels and leaves from unsprayed trees or organically sprayed trees.
Citrus-Infused Olive Oil
Elevate your loved ones' culinary adventures with citrus-infused olive oil.
Tip: Use a coffee filter to strain; no need to buy anything special.
How to make it: Simply combine high-quality olive oil with the zest or peels of oranges, lemons or limes. Strain and bottle the infused oil for a gourmet gift that adds a burst of flavor to salads, marinades and bread dips. Add a recipe card with this gift for how to make this citrus-infused olive oil.
Citrus-Printed Tea Towels
Add a touch of citrusy charm to the kitchen with DIY tea towels. These citrus-printed towels add a pop of color to any kitchen.
Tip: Use letter stencils or hand-paint the year gifted to make it memorable or silly citrus puns.
How to make it: Cut a citrus fruit in half, dip it in fabric paint, and stamp it onto plain tea towels. Allow them to dry, and tie them together with a ribbon for a charming gift.
Create citrus-infused sugar cubes by mixing sugar with citrus zest. Mold them into cubes and let them dry.
Tip: Package them in decorative boxes and gift with a dried tea blend or a tea cup set.
How to make it: Slowly add water to sugar until you get a sand texture, then put into a silicone mold or ice cube tray. Cover tightly and let sit for 24 hours. After sugar has re-crystalized, they can be stored in an air-tight jar or bag in your pantry.
Light up the holiday season with the invigorating aroma of citrus. Make your own scented candles by incorporating homemade citrus essential oils or dried citrus peels into the wax.
Tip: Place them in festive Christmas mugs or a mini terra cotta pot for an upcycled and handmade gift.
Citrus-Infused Sugar Scrub
Create a luxurious sugar scrub by combining granulated sugar, coconut oil and citrus zest. This delightful scrub exfoliates and moisturizes, leaving the skin feeling soft and refreshed.
Tip: Package it in charming jars for a pampering Christmas treat.
Combine citrus peels with honey for a flavorful twist. Let the mixture sit for a few days, then strain out the peels. The infused honey can be a delightful addition to teas or drizzled over desserts.
Tip: This is also a great way to knock a cold out fast with the potency of vitamin C and the power house of healing benefits of honey combined.
Citrus Herb Salt Blend
Create a custom citrus herb salt blend by combining dried citrus zest with sea salt and herbs like rosemary or thyme. Present it in a decorative salt grinder or small jars.
Tip: This also makes a great popcorn seasoning to pair with a movie night gift box. The same can also be done with sugar and vanilla beans for a sweet sugar blend combo!
Citrus-Flavored Chocolate Bark
For the chocolate enthusiasts in your life, consider making citrus-flavored chocolate bark.
How to make it: Melt dark chocolate, stir in citrus zest, and sprinkle with nuts or dried fruits. Break it into festive pieces for a delectable and visually stunning gift.
Citrus-Infused Cocktail Kit
Assemble a citrus-infused cocktail kit for the mixologists on your gift list. Include homemade citrus leaf simple syrup, mini bottles of citrus-flavored spirits such as handmade limoncello, a citrus juicer and some creative cocktail recipes. It's a fun and interactive gift that brings the joy of mixology to the holidays.
See more organic gardening tips from Cooper on taking care of your citrus trees during winter.