In the late afternoon of a short winter day, my grandmother would peel an orange for my sister, brother and me hoping to hold us over until dinner. So patient and so focused on the bright citrus ball in the palm of her hand, she would slowly peel back the thick rind in long vertical pieces taking care not to bruise the shimmering fruit inside. The mist released by the orange would spring into the air in leaps of excitement, vitality and joy! An offering so simple. It was love.
It is January and cold with over a foot of snow here in the Midwest. The holidays are over and it is time for simplicity. It is time to celebrate good health, to delight in the scent of citrus fruit, take comfort in the warmth of cinnamon; and in our sleepy winter heads, feel the crunch of the crisp white flesh of a Granny Smith apple. It’s time to be present with our family and friends — to offer up simple foods, to stay at the table and share an orange together.
Granny Smith Apples with Orange, Lemon and Cinnamon
- Wash, core, then slice each apple; place in a serving bowl.
- When you have enough for everyone, halve a lemon and squeeze the juice from both halves over the apples, taking care to catch any pits.
- Halve two oranges, squeeze the juice of the three halves over the apples (careful of the pits).
- Sprinkle cinnamon lightly over the apples.
- Mix gently with your hands.
- With the fourth half of the orange, thinly slice and lay rounds of orange on top of the apples.
- Lightly sprinkle more cinnamon on top, cover and put in the refrigerator for 30 – 60 minutes.
- Go take a walk outside, look for paw prints in the snow. When you return, make a pot of tea, place a few apples on a small dish.
Sit down for a moment. Breath and enjoy.