Citrus uses for crafts and gifts

  • Citrus pomanders smell lovely and are fabulous to decorate with. Make them by cutting designs or slices in small, firm, oranges, limes or lemons with a knife or zester and push whole cloves into the skin to create pretty patterns. Place in the fridge for a couple of days to dry, then decorate in bowls or hang them up. You can also hang them in your cupboards to fragrance clothes and keep moths away.
  • Make unusual citrus candles by cutting a lemon, grapefruit or orange in half and removing the fruit, while leaving the white centre stem intact to act as your wick. Add cooking oil to the empty citrus peel – taking care not to fill above the white stem – then light the stem and enjoy!
  • Create a stove-top citrus potpourri by combining your favourite dried citrus peel with a few sprigs of fresh rosemary, ½ a teaspoon each of cinnamon and cloves, and 2 or 3-star anise. To use it, add it to a pot filled with water and simmer slowly. Don’t allow the pot to dry out and add water as needed.
  • Make pretty citrus Christmas ornaments by finely slicing citrus, discarding any seeds. Bake on sheets at a low heat in the oven until just dried out, then set aside to cool. Use paperclips or thread to hang.
  • Citrus extracts make nifty gifts for baking enthusiasts. To make them, simply sterilize a 500ml jar and fill with the peels of your chosen citrus fruit, making sure that all the pith is removed. Top with a cup of good quality vodka and seal the jar. Shake gently, then set aside in a cool, dark place for at least 2 weeks before straining and bottling.