Last week I made Orange Cranberry Chutney (recipe in an upcoming post) and had lots of fun canning. It all started with a case of oranges… fresh up from Florida via one of my CSAs. I ended up with a lot of peel left over–perfect for making candied orange peel!
Hooray for winter preserving!
I had never made candied orange peel before, though I had done candied ginger. But the first question I had wasn’t how to make it (there are recipes everywhere), rather what to do with it when I was done.
Although everyone posted pictures of candied orange peel dipped in chocolate, I was a little hesitant to go there (my weight watching resolution is already challenged). But it turns out that you can chop them and add to all kinds of baked goods–just think of the places you’d use raisins! Biscotti would be wonderful and I adapted an old bread recipe which we now like even better (also in a future post).
Did you know that orange peels are actually good for you? Some sources even say they are more nutritious than the juicy inside. According to Oprah.com “The peel contains more than four times as much fiber as the fruit inside, and more tangeretin and nobiletin—flavonoids with anticancer, antidiabetic, and anti-inflammatory properties.” The peels even have vitamin C. Back when I had Guinea Pigs, they loved orange slices and would eat them peels and all–and we all know what good taste Guinea Pigs have (except they like fennel–uugghhh).
If you want to try making your own candied orange peels, you should look for organic oranges. Conventional orange peels may have pesticide residues and are sometimes coated with with dyes and waxes.
Here is how to make candied orange peel:
Peel oranges and slice into strips. (If you are dipping in chocolate, some people prefer wider rectangles)
Put the peels in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then drain. Repeat twice. (this step reduces the bitterness in the orange peel).
Boil in sugar syrup for 45 minutes. Drain, then toss in granulated sugar.
Dry on a rack for a day or two.
Candied Orange Peel
- sliced (organic if possible) orange peel (I used peel from about 3 oranges, but this is flexible)
- 1 c water
- 1 1/2 cup sugar
- extra 1/2 – 1 c sugar for coating
- Place orange slices in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then drain. Repeat twice for a total of three times.
- Combine water and 1 1/2 cup of sugar in saucepan. Heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add orange slices, bring just to a boil and simmer for about 45 minutes until softened and translucent.
- Remove orange peels and save the syrup for tea or other uses if you’d like. Drain orange peel and toss in additional sugar to coat.
- Place on rack to dry for a day or two.