In this week’s At Home With Martin and Sylvia story "A Frosty Walk", Martin and Sylvia go for a walk on a very frosty morning. After admiring the beauty of the frost fairies handiwork on the tips of every tree branch and at the edges of the pond, Martin and Sylvia decide to make the frost fairies a special gift.
Whether you’re a frost fairy or human being, another wonderful gift to give—or nibble on yourself!—on a frosty day is candied orange peels.
This recipe is forgiving and easy to scale, depending on whether you have just a few fairies or a whole host. (Or if you have only an orange or two or a whole sack.) The only absolute rule is that candied orange peels must be made on a dry day for the sugar to dry properly. This makes frosty days perfect, as any humidity in the air will be frozen.
Two other hints. First, while candied orange peels are very good on their own, you can also dip them in melted chocolate to make a French treat called “orangettes”.
Second, if you make a big batch of candied orange peels, you’re going to have a lot of oranges left to eat. I suggest popping open another winter fruit, the pomegranate, and mixing the two to make what we call “Christmas Fruit Salad”.
Candied Orange Peels
Oranges (or Satsumas)
Using a vegetable peeler or a sharp paring knife, peel the oranges. Try to get all the orange part of the peel, but as little of the white pith as possible. Add the orange peels to a saucepan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil.
Once the peels are boiling, carefully pour out the water, reserving the peels. Repeat this boiling step—with fresh changes of water—three times. This will get rid of any remaining bitterness in the orange peels.
On the fourth time, add just enough water to cover the oranges. Whatever amount of water you add, double that amount to figure out how much sugar you need. For example, if you use 1 cup of water, use 2 cups of sugar. Add the sugar to the pot and bring to a boil again, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
Boil the orange peels in the sugar and water until the peels start to look translucent. Then, remove the peels to a piece of waxed paper or a baking rack. Let them dry for just a few minutes, then dip them in fresh sugar to coat. (I typically fill a tupperware bowl with sugar, add a few peels at a time, put the lid on, and shake.)
Leave the orange peels in a cool, dry place for a few hours. Once they’re dry, they can be stored in the fridge for a month or more.
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About the Author
The Sparkle Kitchen Series is created by Meryl Carver-Allmond.
Meryl lives in a hundred-year-old house near the prairie with her sweet husband, two preschoolers, one puppy, one gecko, and about ten chickens. While she's been writing since she could pick up a pen, in recent years she's discovered the joy of photography, too. She feels lucky to be able to combine those skills, along with a third passion — showing people that cooking for themselves can be healthy and fun — in her Sparkle Kitchen posts.