Tuesday, December 28, 2010

On the 4th Day of Christmas...

...I'll give you another recipe.

This is my favorite "new" recipe of 2010.

The original is from a September 1930 issue of Women's Home Companion, for candied grapefruit peel.

I've made this so frequently since first trying it on Halloween night that I've done a little tinkering. If you've tried to candy peel before and failed, or you never have tried and would like to, this is the recipe for you.

Candied Grapefruit Peel*

2 1/2 c. sliced peel, trimmed of excess pith (white portion)[~3 halves]
2 c. sugar
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. grapefruit juice
granulated sugar

Cut peel into strips and boil in lightly salted water for 20 minutes (time from when water comes to a boil). Repeat twice, for a total of three 20 minute boils. Drain well each time, and use fresh water for subsequent boiling.

Combine sugar, water, and grapefruit juice into a clean medium sized saucepan. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves.

Add peel, bring to the boiling point (stirring as little as possible) and cook to 230 degrees F on a candy thermometer.

Drain immediately. It will cool quickly. As soon as it is cool enough to handle (in five minutes or so), lay the strips out on a cooling rack. When completely cool to the touch, roll in granulated sugar and leave to dry overnight.

Store in a container with a tight lid; I layer the pieces of peel in more sugar. This will keep for weeks, but can be stored in the freezer if you prefer.

*Orange and tangerine also work very well. Lemon is not recommended.

CAVEATS, etc., etc.

1. Buy a candy thermometer. They are not expensive!
2. Follow the directions. You don't need to hang out in the kitchen the whole time. Set the timer for the three boils.
3. Drain immediately. If you leave the peel in syrup it will become stiff and hard and won't taste of much but sugar.
4. DO leave to dry overnight. If it's put away too damp, it will mold, even after having been candied and rolled in more sugar. Sugar is a preservative, but it's not a miracle worker.

5. Enjoy!


sapphireblue said...

Yum! I'm starving!

Batty said...

Thanks! I've never candied peel before, I'll give this a try and report back.

Eileen said...

It works very well, and if you dip one end in good chocolate and box it prettily you have a hostess gift worthy of the inhabitants of a Newport mansion.

I also like to use it in cookie recipes...and have decided to use it in lieu of fresh orange peel in my next batch of cranberry bread.

Suky said...

i wonder if it would go nicely in my citrus & white chocolate chip cookies? & why is lemon not recommended?

Eileen said...

It would probably be wonderful in your cookies, Suky.

Against cookbook recommendations, I tried lemon...it gets very hard and doesn't seem to become transparent.

Then again, maybe I trimmed off too much pith. Someone asked about using Meyer lemon peel, and I am thinking of trying again, with that.