October is a great candy month (let's face it, anytime's a great time to make candy!), and everyone loves homemade treats. I love anything fruity or citrus-y, and these candied citrus peels will have you salivating and craving more. You can use any kind of citrus peel- orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit- use your imagination, I'm sure there are tons of varieties you can make! When making the rinds, I doubled the recipe since I was making extra for gifts (if it doesn't get all eaten up), but here's the standard recipe.
Here's what you'll need:
4 oranges (or 6 lemons or 3 grapefruits)
4 cups of sugar (plus more for rolling)
Peel and Cut
Start by peeling the oranges. I cut the oranges into quarters, then peel them. (The leftover orange meat is great for fresh-squeezed orange juice!)
Remove the segments of peel carefully, trying not to tear them. Cut the peel into thin strips between ¼ inch to ½ inch wide. If you’re using fruit with a very thick skin, you might want to use a paring knife to slice away some of the bitter white pith.
Boil the Citrus skins
Place the strips in a large saucepan and cover them with cold water. Bring the water to a boil, then drain the pot. Fill with cold water and boil again. Do this one more time (three times in all). This removes alot of the bitterness from the peels and makes the final product sweeter. My house smelled so good with the fresh citrus scent filling the air!
repeat twice more
Dissolve the Sugar
Once the strips have been boiled 3 times, combine the 4 cups of sugar and 4 cups of water in a saucepan and bring it a boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Wipe the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent sugar crystals from forming, then add the orange peels to the boiling syrup. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to simmer the peels for an hour. By the end of this time they should be very limp and start to look translucent.
add sugar to water
let strips cool in sugar bath
Remove the pan from the heat, and let the strips cool in the syrup.
Cool the Candied Citrus Peels
Take the peels from the syrup and place them on a wire cooling rack set over a baking sheet. I don't have one (long story), so I just laid some skewers on top of each other- voila! (Necessity is the motherhood of invention) Let them drip and dry for about 30 minutes, then roll them in granulated sugar. Place them back on the wire rack in a single layer, and let them dry overnight at room temperature.
The orange peels taste just like the candy orange slices, and the lemon peels taste just like lemon drops. A simple, easy way to make a delicious, unique treat. Hope you love em as much as we do!