Saturday, January 5, 2008

Recipe: candied grapefruit peels

Forgive me if this is a strange departure from my usual kvetching and fashion musings, but this Christmas I made candied grapefuits for my grandfather and they're too fun not to share. I consider candied peels (grapefruit, orange or lemon) the all-natural predecessor to Sour Gummy Worms and the like. They are cheap (and relatively easy, though definitely time-consuming) to make. Through my teen years I made many batches of these babies for sweet-toothed family and friends.

The process of making these is documented on Flickr. Click the above photo to begin the series.

And here's the recipe, reprinted from epicurious without compunction because epicurious is a torturously slow site:


2 small (preferably organic) grapefruits
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 cup superfine granulated sugar


With peel still on fruit, quarter peel lengthwise then remove, keeping pieces of peel intact. Reserve fruit for another use. Diagonally cut pieces of peel into 1/3-inch-wide strips.

Put peel in a 3-quart saucepan filled with cold water and bring slowly to a boil over moderate heat. Boil 1 minute and drain. Repeat procedure 4 times to remove bitterness.

Have ready a lightly oiled large rack set in a shallow baking pan.

Bring regular granulated sugar and water to a boil in a large heavy skillet, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add peel and boil, stirring, until most of syrup is absorbed, about 10 minutes.

Turn out peel onto rack, separating pieces. Dry candied peel, uncovered, at room temperature overnight until only slightly sticky. Toss, a few pieces at a time, in superfine sugar, shaking off excess.

Cooks' notes:
  • If sugar syrup begins to crystallize on peel, turn out of skillet immediately. Peel will still be good but will have a different appearance and won’t need a sugar coating.
  • Candied peel keeps in an airtight container at room temperature 1 week or chilled 1 month. If chilled peel becomes too moist, pat dry and reroll in sugar.
  • To make superfine sugar, simply put granulated sugar in the blender or food processor and process until the grains are tiny.

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