Get ready for a multitude of grapefruit posts in the near future! Grapefruit recently went on sale at my local grocery store for 25¢ each, so naturally I bought sixteen of them. I’ve since realized that sixteen grapefruit is quite a lot. Especially if you live with somebody (Alejandro) who detests them and all their by products. Grapefruit happen to be one of my favorites though, so they definitely won’t last long. I’ve been having fun making new grapefruit flavored treats, but my favorite way to eat one is still unsweetened and straight out of a halved fruit with a grapefruit spoon. SUCH a great way to start a morning!
On to today’s recipe. This was my first attempt at candied citrus peel and is the second item I can cross off my 2016 Baking Bucket List! Preparing the peels was somewhat time intensive, and at times during the process I contemplated why I was even bothering. My sour mood was likely due to the fact that I started the project late and was up until nearly 1:00 am finishing everything though. At this point the peels didn’t look overly appetizing, and my tired brain was resenting all the effort. However, when I gave the peels a taste in the morning, I immediately retracted all the misgivings of the night before. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the candied grapefruit peels were delicious and did in fact taste like candy.
The peels remind me specifically of the grapefruit gummy candy that I used to get at the candy store as a child. You know what store I’m talking about, right? The one filled with bins of candy that are separated into price categories and sold by weight. I have such fond memories of that store. My mom and I would often stop in after a long day at the mall and buy a mixed bag of all our favorite candies. Along with specialty black licorice and Haribo raspberries, one of our all time favorites was Haribo grapefruit gummy candies. I’ve never seen them sold anywhere else (other than online), and these candied peels taste very similar! Other than eating them right out of the container, the candied peels would be a fantastic garnish for cake or pie.
4 cups granulated sugar, divided
1 cup water
3 Tbsp. light corn syrup
1. Slice each grapefruit into four segments. Pull the peel off the fruit. Working with one segment at a time, scrape the inside of the peel repeatedly with a spoon (a grapefruit spoon if you have one) to remove as much of the white pith as possible. Place in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Pour peels into a strainer and rinse with cool water.
2. The boiling process should have softened any remaining pith. Scrape inside of peels once more to remove it, then slice into ¼-inch strips. Place strips into saucepan, and cover with cool water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes, then drain strips in colander. Repeat simmering process three more times. This blanching is essential to removing the bitterness from the peels.
3. Set out a large cookie sheet and spread two cups of the sugar over it. Set aside. Combine remaining two cups of sugar, water, and corn syrup in the saucepan. Bring to a boil.
4. Reduce heat to medium low and add the strips of peel. Stirring occasionally, simmer mixture until peel looks fairly translucent and shiny, about one hour.
5. Transfer strips to prepared pan with a fork, trying to drain as much of the syrup as possible. Toss the peel with the sugar to coat it well, then transfer to a cooling rack and allow to dry overnight.
6. Store candied peel in a covered container, in layers separated by wax paper, for up to a month.
(Recipe adapted from A Beautiful Plate)