It is mandarin season and one of the things we do at this time of the year is to dry the skins from our home grown mandarins. They are used during the year in teas, stocks, soups, sauces and anything else I can justify throwing a little into.
We also make an orange flavoured soy sauce, simply by soaking the soy with the skins and some star anise. Why not try it? Use the soy sauce as you would use normal soy sauce for extra flavours.
Mandarin and Star Anise Flavoured Soy Sauce
Dry the skin of 2 or 3 home grown mandarins (to avoid chemicals) until very dry. It can be air-dried in a sunny window, over a heater or, if you are doing a lot, in a dehydrator. It must be very dry. Strips of orange peel without the pith can be used too.
Place the peel in a jar with several star anise, top up with soy sauce or tamari, cover and allow to soak for a month. A sunny window is a good place to sit it for the month. Use as needed, and top up with soy sauce as it is used.
Next winter, dry some more mandarin skin, strain the flavoured soy sauce and discard the old peelings and star anise. Add the newly dried skin and new star anise and keep your flavoured soy sauce available at all times.