I’ve tried a few recipes for candied orange peel, and this is the one I like the best. It’s simple and it’s consistently good, though I have to admit I slightly botched it this last time, which is unfortunate since the photo is of this time. You’ll note the extra sugar on the orange peels–I let it go a second too long, and I must have had some sugar in the pot that hadn’t dissolved, hence my small problem. Luckily, it still tastes fine. This recipe comes from a great little book called Brittles, Barks, and Bonbons. Some more reasons I love making candied orange peel: you’re making something out of a product you would otherwise throw away, it can be stored for a long, long time in your fridge, and then I can make my favorite chocolate bark (see my last post). Win win, win.
Candied Orange Peel
5 medium navel oranges, preferably organic (you might also want to try a mix of grapefruit and lemon peels, too)
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water
1. Scrub the oranges. Slice the stem end off the orange and place the cut end on a cutting board. Make vertical cuts, about 1 inch apart, all the way through the peel. Carefully peel off the scored sections of rind. With a sharp paring knife, trim away as much of the white pith from the peel as you can. Cut each portion of peel lengthwise into 1/4-inch-wide strips.
2. Place the orange peels in a small pan and add enough cold water to cover. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Drain the peels and set aside.
3. Place the pan over medium-low heat and add the 1 1/2 cups each sugar and water. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add the orange peels to the simple syrup and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and translucent, about 40 minutes.
4. Place a wire cooling rack over a rimmed baking sheet lined with wax paper. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the peels to the rack. Let stand until still slightly tacky but almost dry, about 1 hour.