I spent about half my day last Saturday candying slices of every kind of citrus fruit I could get my hands on. And it mostly worked out OK! Actually, I’m still coming down from the vitamin C-laced sugar high.
It all started last week at work. One of my team mates brought in some super-fancy cupcakes she had made – chocolate cupcakes with blood orange cream cheese frosting, and candied blood orange slices on top of that. They were amazing, of course, but the best part was the candied orange slice. As we all stuffed our faces, she was telling us how easy it was. “Just simmer citrus slices in thick simple syrup until the whites turn translucent, and then let them dry out a bit.” That sounds like the start of a series of tragic misadventures, but it really is that easy.
I decided to experiment with 1 pink grapefruit, 1 regular orange, 1 lemon, 1 blood orange, and 2 limes, because they are tiny. And really, what she said is basically it. You simmer the slices in simple syrup. It takes about 10 – 20 minutes per slice. I had a broad pan so I could do a bunch of slices at once, which is a good thing because otherwise it would have taken just forever. And in addition to the yummy candied fruit, I also have some really good citrusy simple syrup.
Of the fruits we tried, I would not bother with the limes again, because the rinds got really tough. That may have been because of the kind of limes I got, but possibly not. The blood orange was kind of bitter, which I suspect is because of the specific fruit I picked, as my coworker’s blood orange was so delicious. The lemon and orange and grapefruit all got incredibly good!
If you are interested, there are lots of recipes out there – the link takes you to a search. The process was a little bit of a pain in the neck, but with very good results. Definitely would make again! Probably not too often, because it is a lot of sugar, but it’s worth it once in a while 🙂
Done any oddball cooking lately?