Light and Refreshing Orange Cream Soda only takes 3 ingredients and is made in minutes. It's light, tangy, and wonderfully creamy - a citrusy taste of summer-in-a-glass you can make at any time of the year. (Skip to recipe.)
This simple Orange Cream Soda reminds me of my childhood, eating creamsicles on a hot summer day while laying in the grass and watching the clouds drift across the sky.
Cooking with Meredith
Well, the only thing drifting right now is icy trails of snow across the highways. While the winter winds rage outside and we hole up inside, it's a consolation to dream of summer warmth to help us get through this miserable weather spell. School buses have been canceled the last three days here in northern Alberta as the mercury has plummeted near the -40°Celsius mark and wind chills have pushed that temperature to as low as -52°C (on our home thermometer). Yikes. It's definitely been the kind of weather to keep us snuggled up inside (if we could).
The canceled buses means I've been teaching with only a fraction of my class showing up. It's mandatory to keep schools open on days when buses aren't running, so that no students are ever left without a place to go if parents can't arrange child care. That means we teachers need to get ourselves to the school somehow, no matter what the road conditions or weather. We pull on our big old snow boots and winter parkas, wrap ourselves up in our dorky scarves and thick mittens and crank up our reluctant vehicles. Once we get to the safety of our nice warm school, it's kind of like a holiday as we get to have fun with the few students who show up. Today, my little grade one students, the classroom aide, and I had fun building a line of blocks that stretched from the end of the classroom right out into the hallway, using up all the blocks in our classroom tubs. We measured the line using students laid head to foot and concluded it was thirteen students long.
Yup, snow day activities can be fun (with a tinge of crazy to them).
Meredith and I also had fun this week, building ourselves these delicious orange cream sodas (to go with our cheesy Turkey Parmesan Patties).
Every year I seem to have this lingering box of Christmas oranges that sits on the basement staircase and stares at me reproachfully every time I pass. When the kids were little I couldn't keep enough of those juicy little fruits in the house, but nowadays, those poor Christmas oranges never seem to get the love they deserve, and come the end of January they're still hanging around and looking pretty darn sad.
I've made a lovely Honey Mandarin vinaigrette from those old Christmas oranges and a tasty Orange and Grapefruit Syrup, but this year laziness prevailed, and I got Meredith to do the heavy work so we could whip up a light and lovely drink while we cooked. (Luckily my idea of laziness is her idea of fun - not that I make her be my cooking slave or anything like that.)
These wonderfully sweet and tangy, light and creamy Orange Cream Sodas are a breeze to make. Take any old (or new and fresh) oranges - mandarins, tangerines, clementines, blood oranges, cara caras, or even plain navel oranges - juice 'em up, add a glug of sweetened condensed milk, and top up the glass with carbonated water for a fizzy and delicious celebration of the orange. Luckily for us the height of citrus season corresponds with the depths of our northern winter, and right now you'll find the most abundant variety of these refreshing fruits loaded with vitamin C - just what we need to get us through the winter.
So Let's Whip Up This Orange Cream Soda
The old Christmas mandarins gave a lovely deep orange coloured juice, whereas the batch we made from navel oranges was lighter in colour, though no less flavourful. I can't wait to try a batch of Orange Cream Sodas made from blood oranges.
So whether you live where winter winds are howling or summer breezes are blowing, a glass of Orange Cream Soda will always put a smile on your face.
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Kitchen Frau Notes: Leftover sweetened condensed milk freezes beautifully. These orange cream sodas would be a hit at a kids' birthday party - a sweet treat that's a whole lot healthier than regular sugary soda drinks.
Use whatever method you've got to squeeze the juice from your oranges, whether it's a citrus reamer, electric citrus juicer, hand held squeezer, or just two forks.
Orange Cream Soda
- ½ cup (120ml) freshly squeezed orange, tangerine, or clementine juice
- 2 tablespoons (30ml) sweetened condensed milk
- ½ cup (120ml) carbonated water or low sodium club soda
- 2 or 3 ice cubes
Strain the orange juice through a fine meshed sieve.
Pour the orange juice and sweetened condensed milk into a glass. Stir together. Add the carbonated water and stir gently so you don't lose too many bubbles. Plop in a few ice cubes. Enjoy!
To make Orange Cream Soda in larger amounts: Just add 1 tablespoon of sweetened condensed milk for every ¼ cup (60ml) of orange juice and add an amount of carbonated water equal to the amount of orange juice you used.
For more fun cooking projects to make with kids, see the ‘Cooking With Kids’ series here.
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