this is an old post from christmas time-ish that never made it up. although candied orange peel is definitely something i make more around the winter holidays than other times, it is by no means only a seasonal ingredient. you can put it in baked goods, or munch on it dipped in chocolate all year ’round.
i thought it would be a good idea to put pieces of candied orange peel in my christmas stollen along with dried cherries and apricots soaked in brandy.
turns out it was an awesome idea.
these sugary, tangy bits of heaven would also be super in chocolate chip cookies, biscotti, or muffins. they also weren’t half bad straight up by the handful.
start with an organic orange that you have washed very very well. in my opinion, it’s important to use organic for this technique because most of the bad chemicals get on or in the rind, which matters not when you’re tossing the peel. but here, you’re eating it.
cut a small piece off the bottom of the orange so it sits flat on your cutting board, and carefully use a knife to cut the peel off of the flesh. it doesn’t matter if there’s a little orange left on it, but you don’t want too much.
put the peels in a small pot covered in cold water and bring to a boil. drain, cover in cold water, bring to a boil again. repeat a third time. this extracts the bitterness and softens the peel.
next, the standard method is to cut the peel into long strips, candy them, and dip half in chocolate. you may have seen these at the godiva store.
instead, i decided to cube them, since i was going to cube them eventually anyway.
mix your sugar and water and bring to a simmer for a couple minutes. then add the peel and continue to simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the peels are translucent.
wait, how much sugar and water, you ask? it depends. the recipe i was using for guidance called for six oranges with a water to sugar ratio of 1:3. if you’re only using one orange like i did, make as much as you need to pretty much cover the peels in the pan following that proportion.
once they are translucent, remove with a spoon and toss in a little more sugar to coat.
make sure they are laid out in one layer, and let dry. it will take a couple hours. try not to eat them all in the meantime. yum!