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|Candied orange peel coated in dark chocolate.|
I have already mentioned here before that I have made a few attempts at candied orange peel, but was never 100% successful. This time, I think I got the gist of it. They came out really good. I also experimented with some tangerine (mandarin) peels, having to adapt here and there due to their delicate structure. I will tell you how I made them both. The end result was not at all bitter like before. I went two different ways: rolled in sugar and coated in chocolate. Both were delicious, but I have to admit that the ones with the chocolate were out of this world! If you haven't tried these, I highly recommend you do :o)
|Candied tangerine (madarin) peels|
CANDIED ORANGE PEEL
3 oranges (peels only, after you have used the orange for other purposes) I used Navel Orange
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
After juicing the orange (or using the pulp for another purpose), cut the peels into wide strips and remove some (not all!) of the pith using a sharp knife. Then, cut these pieces into thin strips as you can see below:
|Notice that I left some of the pith. This will make the texture of the final peels softer.|
Put the peels in a pot and cover with water. Heat until it comes to a boil. Strain and discard the water. Repeat this process two more times. Set aside.
In the same pot, combine water and sugar and bring to a boil. Add the peels and reduce the heat to the minimum possible, for a very gentle simmer.
Simmer until peels are translucent.
The syrup should not get very thick, so it is important to simmer at very low heat. If necessary, add bits of water (I didn't need to do that). My peels took 50 minutes to cook.
Strain the peels very well and collect the syrup into a bowl. This syrup can be used later as a sweetener to juices and teas, or for soaking cakes, and so on. Keep it in a sealed container in the fridge.
After the peels are VERY WELL DRAINED, you have two options:
Arrange the peels on a parchment paper or over a rack to dry for many hours or for a couple of days, depending on the humidity in your area.
The second option is coating the peels in sugar after they are very well drained, and then proceed as above to dry. Look at the difference:
Both options are good depending on what you intend to do. The ones I coated in chocolate were not rolled in sugar. But if not using chocolate, the ones rolled in sugar turned out better, they dried faster and were more tender.
To coat with chocolate, melt 200g of dark chocolate as per instructions HERE, and dip each dried peel in the chocolate and place them over a piece of parchment paper do harden.
If there is any tempered chocolate left, you can pipe them into chips, let them dry and they will be ready to be used in another recipe when needed.
IF USING TANGERINE (Mandarin)
To make candied tangerine peels, please consider the following:
Tangerine peels are not as bitter as orange peels, and they are more fragile so you only need to boil them once. You don't need to remove the pith.
Depending on the size of your tangerines, adapt quantities accordingly.
After they are cooked in syrup, they will be much softer than the orange peels, and this makes it more difficult to arrange them on parchment or rack, so, consider cutting wider strips and after they are dry, cut them into finer strips or chop, depending on what you are using them for.
Tangerine peels cook faster, they will need 30 to 40 minutes to get translucent.
In my experience, rolling the tangerine peels in sugar while wet, even if they have been very well drained, was not successful. They are much wetter than orange peels and the final result had too much sugar.
|Compare the tangerine peels with and without sugar.|
One option would be to let them dry partially and then roll them in sugar. That worked better for me.
These candied peels can be enjoyed on their own or with a cup of coffee or tea, or as an ingredient in cakes, breads, desserts or whatever suits your fancy.
These peels have also appeared here: