Seville Orange

Citrus aurantium

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The Basics

  • What Is It?

    The bitter/sour fruit of a specific citrus variety (family Rutaceae), related to but entirely distinct from the more common sweet orange.

  • Seasonality

    WINTER (Can be frozen and used year-round)

  • Flavour Profile

    Sour/bitter, acidic (juice), highly fragrant, intensely orangey

  • Other Names

    Bitter, sour, bigarade, and/or marmalade orange.


How-To

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  • Find

    Specialty Grocery Stores, Fruit Markets, Direct from Growers, Special Order (Online or In-Store)

  • Choose

    Bright orange, relatively firm oranges with a fragrant peel. Some softness and surface scarring is normal.

  • Prep

    Difficulty: Low – Easy to peel and juice. The numerous seeds need to be strained out if using the juice. The peel and zest are easy to work with.

  • Use

    Generally cooked, though technically edible raw. The peel or zest is popular in preserves (e.g. marmalade). The juice is used in sauces, marinades, and desserts.

  • Store

    Ripen: Room Temperature
    Short Term: Refrigerate
    Long Term: Freeze whole

Culinary Info

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  • Flavour Profile

    Sour/Bitter (NOT Sweet); Highly aromatic with a powerful ‘orange’ scent and flavour (especially in the zest).

  • Substitutions

    A mix of sweet orange and lemon juice can sometimes work (see “Need More Detail?” below).

  • Cuisines

    Important in European preserves (e.g. marmalade) and desserts, Cuban and Mexican savory cooking, and some East Asian sauces and recipes.

  • Flavour Pairings

    Savory: Pork, duck, rich & intense meats; cilantro, onion, garlic, oregano
    Sweet: Chocolate, lemon, whisky

  • Varieties

    Chinnotto, Daidai, Florida/Cuban Sour Orange, Bergamot (Bergamot is highly distinctive and not interchangeable with standard bitter oranges)

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  • Nutrition

    Extremely high in Vitamin C.
    For a full nutritional profile, click Need More Detail? below.

  • Top-To-Tail

    The fruit is entirely edible or usable, including the skin (zest and pith), flesh/juice, and seeds.

  • GMO Status

    Non-GMO

  • Health & Science

    – Seville oranges are used to manufacture a weight-loss supplement known or suspected to cause serious side effects.
    – As with grapefruit (and many other citrus), Seville oranges may interact with certain classes of drugs.

  • Organic vs. Conventional

    Both organic and conventionally grown Seville oranges are available, though availability may be limited.

RECIPES

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  • Bacon marmalade - Diversivore.com
    Bacon Marmalade
    This unique and delicious take on bacon jam combines crisp bacon, caramelized onions, and the zest and juice of Seville oranges.
  • Puerco Pibil - Yucatecan slow-cooked pork made here with an Instant Pot pressure cooker - Diversivore.com
    Pressure Cooker Puerco Pibil (Yucatecan Shredded Pork)
    A classic and unforgettable Yucatecan Mexican dish, modified here for an electric pressure cooker. Scratch-made with wonderful ingredients, plus a smoky twist.
  • Seville Orange French Toast with Maple Whipped Cream - Diversivore.com
    Seville Orange French Toast with Maple Whipped Cream
    If you're tired of French toast that's drowning in sugar and syrup, this is the recipe for you. Fragrant and intense Seville oranges make this a savory treat.
  • K'uut Bi Ik (Dried Chili Salsa) made with morita chipotles for a smoky and delicious twist on the Yucatecan classic - Diversivore.com
    Smoky Dried Chili Salsa (K'uut Bi Ik)
    Nothing finishes a good Mexican recipe like a really great salsa. While cooked and fresh salsas are wonderful, it's hard to beat the simplicity and impact of k'uut...
  • Seville (Sour) Orange and Lemon Pie with a Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust - Diversivore.com
    Sour Orange and Lemon Pie
    Seville Orange and Lemon make for an intensely flavourful, wonderfully rich dessert.  The chocolate Graham wafer crust and fluffy meringue topping don't hurt either.

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