A citrus aroma brings feelings of happiness and joy to a home and can help lift spirits. Citrus is used in aromatherapy as a way of maintaining a positive mood. Orange has a tangy citrus fragrance that will brighten any home and making your own homemade dried orange slices isn't difficult. All you need are some basic tools, a few fresh oranges and your oven. Dried orange slices can also be added to many craft projects.
Preheat the oven to 65C.
Slice oranges in discs about 0.75 cm thick. A mandolin slicer is a great way to slice oranges all to the same thickness. Or use a sharp knife and cut the discs as close to the same thicknesses as possible.
Place the wire on top of the baking tray. Arrange the orange slices on the wire rack so they don't touch each other. Air needs to circulate around the orange slices to dry them properly.
Pop the baking tray into the oven and prop the oven door open just a bit. This will allow the moisture to escape during the drying process. Total drying time for orange slices is approximately six hours. If the orange slices start to curl on the edges, flip them over. The orange slices should be dry yet still pliable. Overdrying can result in brittle, non-fragrant orange slices.
Remove the dried orange slices from the oven and place them on paper towels until cooled.
Place the dried orange slices in a decorative bowl and allow their citrus fragrance to tantalise the senses. The dried orange slices can also be made into or added to a wreath or your favourite citrus potpourri.
Spray a light coat of clear acrylic on the dried orange slices to use in craft projects. The acrylic will act as a preservative and the orange slices will keep up to four years. Coating the dried orange slices with acrylic will eliminate the citrus aroma. Spray a light even coat of acrylic on one side of the orange slices, let dry and repeat on the other side.