Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Orange Candy

Complete self-sufficiency would require one of two things from us, either give up citrus fruit, or move to a climate where we can grow it. So how can we nurture our family's love affair with all things citrus, while reducing our footprint? Eliminating waste! Behold: Candied Orange Rind. This is a long process, and takes a fair amount of attention, but it only has two ingredients (three if you count water) and it couldn't be simpler.

Candied Citrus Rind:

Wash and slice the peels from 3 oranges (or 6 lemons or 10 limes) into thin strips. Leave the white parts on.
Dissolve 3 cups of sugar into 3 cups of boiling water
Add rind
Simmer until very soft, stirring occasionally (a little more than an hour for orange peel)
Drain (reserve the liquid, we're going to come back to that)
Sprinkle a pan with 1/2 cup granulated sugar
Toss boiled peels into the pan and sprinkle another 1//2 a cup overtop
Mix until peels are coated 
Spread the peels out on a cookie sheet and dry for a day or two (you can speed this process up by drying the candy with the pilot light of your gas oven)

Voila! Delicious, all-natural candy! Mix this in trail mix, coat with chocolate, serve over ice cream or use to garnish vodka martinis (we won't judge)

But wait! What about that sugar water you drained off the peels? There's still a lot of waste going on if you pour that down the drain. Instead, try this:

Take your sugar water (which should be lightly flavoured with the citrus peel) and put it back on the stove.
Dump in any leftover sugar from the pan you tossed the finished peel in
Add thin slices of ginger and a splash of citrus juice
Reduce to a syrup (watch carefully)

Strain out the ginger (go ahead and toss that in a little sugar too, candied ginger, yum!)

Pour over ice cream, use as a glaze, to sweeten tea, or in place of simple syrup in cocktails (we're still not judging).  

All-Natural Orange Candy on Punk Domestics

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