Remember when we had Netherlands month on the blog? Of course you don't, it was ages ago! This recipe for Oranjebitter (Orange Bitters) is from way back then but I was holding onto it for a special occasion. The return of the spectacular Virtual Vegan Potluck is the perfect time to share this one with you, not only because I'm in the beverages category - but also because the (optional) theme ingredient this time around is Citrus.
Cue: Orange Bitters. You might be wondering what orange bitters is, and thinking that the use of the word "bitter" in the title is not so appealing. Ever had a Lemon, Lime & Bitters? They use Angostura bitters. Dutch Orange Bitters (Oranjebitter) is another type of bitters, but an orange flavoured one - pretty self explanatory.
Their uses are very broad, they make a great aperitif, digestif and cocktail ingredient. One of the easiest ways to use your orange bitters is to make yourself a Lemon, Lime & Orange Bitters. Just swap out your angostura bitters for orange. There are many cocktails which specifically used orange bitters, but you can also use it to drizzle over ice cream, to flavour cakes and desserts or just to drink on ice if you love the taste of bitter orange (if you're a marmalade lover, then you probably do love the taste of bitter orange!). If you're keen to just drink it as a dessert, you can whip up a simple sugar syrup (gently heat 1 cup water with 1 cup sugar to dissolve and then cool to room temperature) and then add the orange bitters to taste.
Because it's been such a long time since Netherlands month, I'll remind you of some of the delicious vegan recipes I shared:
Dutch Orange Bitters (Oranjebitter)
1 lemon, washed
1 orange, washed
5 cardamom pods
3 tbsp sugar
2 star anise
1 cinnamon stick
1/3 vanilla bean
2 cups vodka
1. Use a potato peeler to thinly peel the orange and lemon. Juice them both and then set the juice aside, but save the seeds. Lay the peel and the seeds out on a tray and dry them in a warmed oven until dried out and crisp.
2. Place the peel, seeds, cardamom pods and sugar in a mortar and pestle and crush up just a little bit.
3. Combine all ingredients in a medium sized jar and pour the reserved orange and lemon juice and the vodka over the top. Shake well and put the lid on nice and tight.
4. Leave in a cool, dark place for 2-3 weeks to infuse, taking it out and shaking it up every couple of days.
5. You can leave it as long as you like, and taste it every so often until you get it as strong and bitter as you like. When you like how it tastes, strain through a tea strainer lined with filter paper to get a clear golden liquid. Stores in the cupboard for 12-18 months.
Makes 2 1/2 - 3 cups.
A quick note- I've photographed mine before I strained it out, to show the ingredients infusing in the jar, which is why it's still quite cloudy in my pictures. The final result after straining will be clearer.
Cocktails using Orange Bitters:
This is part of the Virtual Vegan Potluck #5, so please use the buttons below to check out what other delicious recipes have been brought to the potluck:
Or, if you'd like to start at the beginning and work your way through, click here.
Thanks for stopping in and enjoy the potluck! If you like what you see on the blog and want to keep in touch, I recommend liking the Gormandize facebook page so that you can get my new recipes all up in your feed!
In case you're interested.... this month is Myanmar (Burmese) Food Month on the blog.
This month I'm featuring vegan recipes from Myanmar (Burma).
Check out my other Burmese recipe posts: