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citrus-infused vinegar

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The Damsel has long sung the sweet song of vinegar as a frugal cleaner.

But what if you hate the smell? What if it makes you feel more like this:











than like this:













When it comes to cleaning, the Damsel needs all the help she can get to feel happy about it.

If you infuse vinegar with citrus (“infuse” is a fancy word for “let stuff sit in it.”) the vinegary smell is lessened to the point where some noses can’t even detect it. Instead, it’s replaced with that nice freshness that is citrus’s trademark. And you can have ALL THIS for free.

Disclaimer: The Damsel wishes to acknowledge that some folk like the smell of vinegar. This is some people’s reality. The Damsel is happy for you and jealous at the same time. She’s been trying to learn to be glad for other people’s good fortune but it somehow doesn’t seem fair.

The rest of us: All you need is plain white cheapo vinegar that you already have. The stuff you’ve been trying not to smell while you use it. Plus, some citrus peels you were going to throw away.










Peel the orange (you can use any citrus–grapefruit, lemon, lime) and stuff the peels into a glass jar such as a canning jar. Smell your hands. This is what your future cleaning session will smell like. You may dance at this point if you feel you should.













Pour the vinegar over the peels, filling the jar. Cap it and then just let it sit. Two weeks, if you can stand it.

The orange oil in the peels has its own cleaning properties. It’s a natural, gentle solvent, and de-sticky-ifies things nicely. You can use this vinegar any way you normally use it for cleaning…straight up or in mixtures.

Here is one basic cleaning recipe:

Mix 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/4 cup baking soda or 2 teaspoons Borax and 1/2 gallon water. Pour into a spray bottle and go to it.

You could also mix the infused vinegar 1/2 and 1/2 with water as a homemade Febreeze. The Damsel can’t wait to try it on a certain bedroom that has that dreaded funky boy-dirty-sock smell. If you are housetraining a puppy, this would be an excellent cleaner to take away the odor that makes the puppy want to go wee there again.

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  • Jenni-Hope

    I don’t mind nor do I love the smell of vinegar, but pickle juice is another story. I love it! And it is the cure for the common cold… drink a jar of it, if you live, the cold won’t. My theory, for what it’s worth, is that it raises your acidity level too high for the poor little cold germs. Kind of sad, but it works!
    I got a kick out of Jeffrey R. Hollands talk about laborers, he mentions downing a quart of pickle juice as a negative thing????? Maybe he meant if you gulped it down, for it definitely should be sipped to enjoy every last drop!

  • joycerrvt

    this sounds wonderful! I’m going to try it! Thanks! – Muum

  • shel

    The vinegar and baking soda don’t nix each other’s abilities? How do you mix them without a bubbly explosion? šŸ™‚