Cut oranges crosswise into 3/4-inch slices to create a pinwheel effect, keeping them as uniform as possible in thickness. Lay on a baking sheet or aluminum foil in the oven set at the lowest temperature (around 150 degrees F). Leave them to bake for about four hours, then turn with a spatula, checking them every hour until they seem almost dry with a bit of moisture left so they still have an orange color (they will continue to dry at room temperature). Create a tiny hole in the top of each slice with a small paring knife, and string twine through each to hang on your tree.
Sweet Lady Apples
When picking these mini apples, try to choose the ones that are 2 inches across or smaller so they're not too bulky (or heavy) to hang from the branches of your tree. To hang: Take a piece of floral wire long enough to poke about one third of the way through the apple (or until it feels secure), and leave enough wire to hook at the top to hang on your tree.
How to Make a Dried Fruit Garland
You will need: citrus fruit, an oven, raffia or string, a darning needle or wire and a skewer, ribbon.
You may also want to add pine cones and cinnamon sticks.
The first stage is to dehydrate your oranges, lemons and limes. There are a number of ways of doing this, but I have found that the easiest and quickest way is in the oven.
Cut the fruit into slices not more than half a cm thick. If you start at the stalk end and cut across the segments, you will get a lovely stained glass window effect and also an area in the middle for threading.
Put them in the oven straight onto the rack, don’t bother with a baking sheet as this will allow the warm air in the oven to get to both sides of the fruit and it will dry quicker. Put the oven on about 100 degrees c, no hotter. Remember that you are drying the fruit out, not cooking it!fruit garland and decorations
It will take between 2 and 4 hours for the slices to dry, depending on the thickness of the slices. The thinner the slices, the quicker they will dry. If they are not totally dry, it doesn’t matter, you can always put them on a sunny windowsill or next to a radiator to finish drying them out.
To dry whole clementines or satsumas, lemons and limes, leaving the top and bottom of the fruit intact, make a cut at 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock, then at 9 and 3 o’clock and then half way between those, so you that you have eight slits evenly spaced out around the fruit. Stick a skewer or a darning needle through it from top to bottom. Put it in the oven straight on the rack as before.
Tips for Drying Fruit
Thinner slices dry faster.
Drying whole fruit it takes longer than the slices. Small fruit dries quicker (I used clementines, but lemons and limes might also work well).
A lot of juice will come out and may well end up on your kitchen floor, so putting down some pre-emptive tea towels or some kitchen towel to catch it might be an idea.
Once dry the fruit keeps for ages. However, do not be tempted to store almost dry fruit in a tin and then put the tin next to a radiator. It will go mouldy, as some of mine did when I did this.
Put a skewer through the middle of the whole fruit and the slices as soon as you get it out of the oven, while it is still soft.
Fruit that is not quite dry can be left out do dry out naturally.
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180 South “E” Street
Porterville, CA 93257