Sunday, May 11, 2008

How to Candy Citrus Peel

Candied Lemon Peel
Originally uploaded by M Molina
I'm making two cakes today. One for the belated celebration of my son's birthday and the other for Mother's Day. (Happy Mom's Day to all you mamas out there!)

Anyhow, to top one of today's cakes, I made candied lemon peel last night. Candied citrus peel is easy to make, can be used for many things, and ends up making a byproduct that can be used for something else (more on that later). This is how I do it:
  • 4 lemons
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  1. Put the 2 cups of water in a saucepan and set it on the stove to boil.
  2. While you're waiting, thoroughly wash and dry your fruit (lemons in this case). Take a vegetable peeler to them and peel off the skin, avoiding the pith. I do it in long continuous strokes from stem-end to other end, but you can really do it however you like. Just make sure you have nice-sized pieces because they'll shrink and curl later.
  3. When the water is boiling, drop the lemon peel in and boil for about 5 minutes. 
  4. Remove the lemon peel and set aside.
  5. Pour 2 cups of sugar into boiling water and stir to incorporate. When the sugar is completely dissolved, put the lemon peel back in and simmer until the pieces are translucent.
  6. Remover from heat and fish the pieces of peel out with tongs or a fork and place them on a piece of waxed paper to dry. 
  7. Allow the lemon sugar water, which is essentially lemon simple syrup at this point, to cool and then pour into a glass bottle to store for later. 
I always use or eat my candied citrus peel right away, so I never have the chance to store it.  But if I did, I think the best way to do so would be in an airtight container in the fridge.

I do, however, keep my lemon simple syrup in the fridge. I don't think it needs to stay in the fridge, though I could be wrong, but I live in Southern California, where ants rule the land. So ... sugar water stays in the fridge.

Use your lemon simple syrup in cocktails, to sweeten iced tea, to glaze tofu or whatever you like.

Pics of the beautiful bottle of lemon simple syrup and today's cakes still to come!

Happy Mother's Day!


jessy said...

what a great idea! and they seem easy enough to make, too! yay! i also love the fact that you can reuse the byproduct - simple lemon syrup sounds pretty damn awesome to me! :)

Marni said...

They are *so* easy to make and quite delish. You can really get creative on ways to use the candied peel, too. And I love any recipe with minimal waste, so the lemon simple syrup byproduct makes me happy.