Own Brunch with Blood Orange Mimosas
Mimosas are one of my favorite cocktails to make, whether the sun is rising or setting. One-part juice to two-parts champagne creates the perfect balance for pairing breakfast or dessert. Okay, maybe 25 percent juice… ten? No matter the juice proportion you use, mimosas are perfection in a glass. While mimosas traditionally contain navel orange juice, you can use any fruit juice. Of all the blends I’ve tried, blood orange mimosas are one of my favorite blends to mix. If you’ve never heard of blood oranges, you’re not alone. But what exactly is a blood orange?
What is a Blood Orange?
Blood oranges offer some of the best flavors and colors in the orange flavor. While the name may sound morbid, it’s warranted by the dark-colored flesh. The skin color ranges from light orange to patches of dark red. Inside, the flesh varies from pink to intense red color. In addition, the flavor of blood orange is unlike any other member of the orange family. The taste is sweeter than navels, often described as undertones of raspberry. Blood orange’s unique color and flavor make them an ideal choice for use in cocktail creation, baking, salads, and even drying slices for a color boost in dried fruit potpourri.
What causes the unique color is a chemical reaction by anthocyanin, a type of flavonoid found in red, blue, and purple fruits and vegetables. The chemical reaction is kickstarted by colder temperatures at night and warmer days. The Southern Mediterranean, Italy, Texas, and California offer ideal climates for blood oranges to thrive and create rich colors. While packed with flavor, blood oranges have a short window of availability. So while they’re in season, this is the perfect time of year to make blood orange mimosas!
Blood Orange Mimosas
Blood Orange Mimosas
- 750 ml Extra Dry Champagne chilled
- 10 whole Blood Oranges
- Place the oranges in a fridge to chill the night prior, or at least four hours prior to juicing. This will ensure the juice is chilled, and won't warm the champagne.
- Once chilled, rinse with cold water and cut each of the blood oranges in half.
- Juice each blood orange half, straining the juice through a mesh sieve to remove the pulp. Transfer the juice to a pitcher.
- Fill each champagne glass with 4 ounces of chilled champagne
- Top each glass with 2 ounces of blood orange juice.
- Serve immediately.
When are Blood Oranges Available?
Because blood oranges require colder nights to start the chemical reaction with anthocyanins, they are winter citrus. Mediterranean blood oranges are harvested from late September through early November. The harvest seasons in Texas are December through March, and in California, November through May. While that’s great news for winter mimosas, what if you want to have blood orange mimosas on the porch during summer? Luckily, you can freeze orange juice to take advantage of the flavor outside of blood orange season.
Freezing Blood Orange Juice
Freezing blood orange juice is easy to do, but I have a few tips and tricks to make your life easier. No matter how you freeze your juice, a recommendation is to remove the pulp. While the pulp will freeze OK, it turns to dry pieces that will ruin a mimosa once it thaws—removing the pulp before freezing creates a mimosa as good as using fresh juice. Once strained, the container used to freeze the juice will depend on preference.
If you only need small portions for a couple of blood orange mimosas, an ice cube tray will help. One standard well in an ice cube tray holds one ounce of liquid. When mixing this recipe, you can remove two frozen juice cubes and place them in a champagne glass. Place the glass in a fridge until thawed or room temperature for a quicker thaw. Once the juice melts but is still chilled, top with champagne and serve.
Frozen orange juice can last for up to four months if stored in an air-tight container. When freezing, write the date frozen on the container to keep track of the freshness. For more extended storage in the freezer, you can store concentrated juice for up to a year. To concentrate juice at home, freeze juice in a narrow-mouthed bottle leaving room for the liquid to expand. Once frozen, place the jar at room temperature. The juice will thaw before the water content. Pay close attention! Once the juice melts, flip the bottle upside down, resting securely in a wide-mouthed bottle. Once the juice drains, leaving the water ice behind, discard the ice. Re-freeze the juice. You can freeze concentrated juice for up to a year.
Blood orange margaritas are pretty friendly when paired with foods. They are a famous brunch cocktail and pair well with egg-based dishes, French toast, hash browns, and avocado toast! If pairing foods with blood orange mimosas in the evening, they pair well with desserts. The raspberry undertones pair well with strawberry and raspberry cheesecakes, strawberry shortcake, angel food cake, and even chocolate! I’d love to hear your favorite pairings in the comment section.