If you want to taste or add an Osage orange to your diet, consider a few factors first. Orange. Even though this fruit is often used for its medicinal properties, if you want to eat an Osage orange, it can be challenging due to its tough, fibrous flesh and bitter taste.
In this article, I will tell you how to eat an Osage orange since it’s very difficult to chew & swallow for some people. Some people also hate the taste & texture of this fruit because their flesh is known to be more bitter than other fruit.
Additionally, the seed inside this fruit is usually hard & small, making it difficult to remove. However, it doesn’t mean that you should avoid eating one. This article is for you if you want to taste an osage orange. Before I tell you how to eat an osage orange, let’s take a quick loop at the benefits of eating Osage orange.
Benefits of eating Osage Oranges
Despite a huge debate on the edibility of osage orange and its difficult-to-eat nature, It does provide several health benefits. According to many researchers, this fruit is rich in nutrients and can contain compounds known to carry anti-inflammatory & antioxidant properties.
If you are prone to inflammation or need protection against oxidate sheet oxidative stress, consider eating this fruit. To know more about their edibity, consider reading “Are Osage Oranges Edible?“.
In addition, many people also believe that keeping this fruit around your home helps in repelling insects and rodents, now after knowing so many benefits of eating Osage oranges on how to eat an Osage orange.
How to Eat an Osage Orange
Even though it is safe to eat osage oranges, people still avoid using them because of their sour, bitter, and astringent taste. However, you can eat raw osage orange fruit or cook it in another form like Jelly jam or juice. If you want to try eating an Osage orange raw, here’s what you need to do:
- First, you need to select a fruit that looks bright green and firm to the touch. You should avoid choosing any fruit that is yet to ripen. If the fruit is not bright green or has turned yellow or brown, it will likely be overripened. Therefore also, avoid consuming overripened fruits as well.
- After choosing the right ripened fruit, you need a sharp knife to cut it in half. You can scoop out its flesh using a spoon or directly eat from the rind. I like to cook them or prepare juice out of them. I have also used these fruit in my baking goods. The fruit will have a taste of tart and tangy flavor. In one sentence, it can be described as a cross between a lemon and a grapefruit.
- Before eating the fruit, remove the large hard seed that should be avoided. You must remove it from the flesh properly before eating, which may cause gastrointestinal problems and trigger allergies.
How to select ripe Osage Oranges?
It is relatively easy to select the right osage orange fruit. Firstly, take a quick look at your tree and select the one that is firm to the touch & looks bright green. You should always avoid the Brown or yellow ones that are overripe.
The healthy, ripe fruit should also be free of blemishes without any soft spots. When smelled, you should get a slightly sweet Aroma. A ripened fruit of an osage orange tree also yields slightly when pressed.
How to prepare Osage Oranges for eating?
Once you have selected ripe Osage oranges, clean them thoroughly under cool water. After that, you should also prepare or cook them before consuming them.
There are many types of methods that you can use to prepare osage orange fruits. Also, you can either eat them alone or with other fruits. If you want to know more, I mention a few methods of eating Osage oranges below.
3 Methods of Eating Osage Oranges
Method 1: Eating the Fruit Raw
As I told you earlier, you can also eat osage orange fruit RAW, the simplest method for consuming this fruit. However, you may only appreciate the taste & texture of this RAW fruit if you prepare it or cook it thoroughly.
Also, wash the osage orange fruit thoroughly and cut it in half using a sharpener to remove the seeds from its center. If eating this fruit for the first time, you should take a small bite of the flesh and chew it thoroughly before swallowing it.
If you like, you can take a few more bites until you have eaten as much as you want. Or you can wait to see how your body reacts to this fruit. People suffering from an over-sensitive immune system should always avoid eating new fruit before talking to their doctor.
Method 2: Making Jam or Jelly
If you want to preserve this fruit, consider making Jelly or jam. A jam or Jelly from osage orange fruit makes it easier to eat. If you think it can be tough to make Jelly, it doesn’t. You first need to wash osage oranges properly under fresh water.
After that, you must cut them into small pieces using a sharp and clean knife. Make sure to wear gloves to keep your hand protected from getting cuts or accidents while using knives.
After cutting them into small pieces, you need to remove all the seeds from them as it can cause gastrointestinal upset. Also, remove the toughest part of the flesh as you like. The juice can be sticky and difficult to wash off, so choose a glove that is easy to wash as well.
Now, we will use a Potato masher, or you can use an immersion blender to break up the fruit and release the juice. But to make straining easy, you must first put the fruit and water in a large pot & bring it to a boil. You should boil the fruit for at least 30 minutes while steering it occasionally.
After that, strain the mixture through a cheesecloth and press out as much juice as possible. You will have to strain the mixture multiple times to remove all the seeds and pulp. After straining the juice, you need to add sugar and again bring it to a boy while steering it to a full stop.
Also, add powdered pectin and boil it for another minute. I like to use a Candy thermometer to ensure the mixture reaches at least 220 degrees Fahrenheit, which is necessary for the pectins to set in.
We will need to sterilize the jar first, so place it into a part of boiling water for 10 minutes before filling the jam in it and seal with lids. You can store these Jelly or jam in the refrigerator or freezer after it cools down to room temperature.
Method 3: Using Osage Oranges for Recipes
As I told you earlier, people often use Osage Orange in cooking recipes. You can use it in various recipes, from roasted dishes to juices. I like to use use them in my baking good. You can enjoy roasting osage orange fruit by Cutting it into small wages and, tossing it with olive oil and salt & pepper, and spreading it out on a baking sheet to roast for 20-25 minutes.
My kids personally like this recipe when I Sprinkle the roasted wedges with sugar and cinnamon for a sweet and savory flavored treat. Sometimes I also use Osage Orange fruits to make juice with other fruits.
Although the process can be a bit messy, it is simple to do. You need a juicer or a Blender to extract the juice from this fruit, but make sure you are removing any seeds or the toughest part of the flesh.
Since osage orange juice can be quite bitter, you should consider adding a bit of Honey or sugar, especially if you are serving it to your kid. , Also, make sure to strain the juice properly using a fine mesh strainer to remove any pulp or seeds.
3 Health Benefits of Eating Osage Oranges
Despite their unappetizing taste, Osage oranges are rich in essential nutrients that provide numerous health benefits. Here are some of the benefits you can expect from eating Osage oranges:
High Vitamin C Content
Just like any other orange fruit, osage orange fruits are also rich in vitamin C nutrient, which is known to be a very powerful antioxidant for us. Believe it or not, eating osage orange fruit can help you Boost Your immune system & protect your body against free radical damage.
As per my research & sources available on Google, a 100-gram serving of osage orange should have at least 33 milligrams of Vitamin C, about 50% of the recommended intake.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Also, American Heart Association research has shown that Osage oranges tend to be high in potassium which may help lower blood pressure levels. A study published in the ResearchGate found that the extract of Osage orange leaves had a potent vasodilatory effect, which means it will help you relax blood vessels & improve blood flow.
As I told you earlier, Osage oranges contain immune-boosting compounds. Many people claim that osage oranges contain a significant amount of antibacterial and antimicrobial activity, which can help in fighting off harmful bacteria & viruses.
3 Cautions to Keep in Mind
While Osage oranges have numerous health benefits, there are some cautions to keep in mind when consuming them:
- Don’t Overeat Osage Oranges: Osage oranges contain compounds that can cause digestive discomfort and may even be toxic in large quantities. It’s best to consume them in moderation and not make them a regular diet.
- Allergic Reactions: Some people may be allergic to Osage oranges, and consuming them can cause adverse reactions. You must seek medical attention immediately if you experience hives, swelling, or difficulty breathing after eating an Osage orange.
- Osage Oranges and Pregnancy: There is limited research on the safety of consuming Osage oranges during pregnancy. So, I’ll highly advise you to consult a healthcare professional before adding them to your diet if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
After reading this article, I hope you have everything you need to know on the question “how to eat and osage oranges.” If you find this article helpful, then consider sharing it. Your share will help many people learn about the different methods of eating Osage Orange and enjoy its taste.
They will also learn about the potential health benefit of consuming orange fruit. Check our other helpful guide on osage orange tree care & management shared on this website. See you in the next post, till then, take care & goodbye.