Saturday, November 20, 2010

Candied Citrus Peel

I'm gradually compiling and making the ingredients for a special German-inspired holiday cupcake to be revealed in a guest post on another blog after Thanksgiving. As some of those ingredients are delicious in their own right I'll start posting recipes for you now beginning with candied citrus peel. I'm assuming this is more or less what my final recipe means when it calls for "mixed peel." While I know I could just head to the store to buy some I'm feeling like a food snob today and decided to make my own. I'm sure it's much cheaper too.

It's a simple process involving more sugar than I care to think about boiled into a thick syrup and combined with strips of lemon and orange peel. While I plan to use mine for baking I think they'd make a delicious and attractive snack if dipped into melted chocolate and cooled. They remind me a little bit of those gummy orange and lemon slices you can get in the candy store, which I happen to adore.

Most recipes I found called for removal of the pith, which seemed very time consuming and detrimental to my fingernails. Always looking for the easy way out, I found one blogger who skipped that step and instead blanched his peels several times in fresh water to remove some of the bitterness. I tried breaking up the 20-minute cooking process called for in the original recipe to use three batches of water and while there's still plenty of citrus flavor in the finished product there's very little bite.

Candied Citrus Peel
Recipe adapted from

3 lemon peels, cut into 1/4 inch strips
2 orange peels, cut into 1/4 inch strips
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/8 - 1/4 cup granulated sugar for coating

1) Place lemon and orange peel in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat and boil for five minutes. Drain and refill pot with water and add lemon and orange peels. Again bring to a boil and heat for another five minutes. Drain and refill with water, lemon and orange peels, and boil for eight minutes. Drain and set aside.

2) In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil and cook until mixture reaches thread stage, 230 degrees F (108 degrees C) on candy thermometer, or small amount dropped in cold water forms a soft thread. Stir in peel, reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Drain.

3) Place peel on a wire rack over a baking sheet and let dry for several hours. Put sugar in a bowl or airtight, lidded container and add small amounts of peel. Toss to coat. Repeat until all pieces are coated with sugar.


Catch A Falling Star said...

I actually have this recipe! I found it about a year ago and have been dying to try it and also wondering how good it is.
Is it super sweet? Is it like a gummy bear consitancy?
Just wondering.
They look fab!!