Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Don't Throw Out Your Citrus Peels...

Eat them.

I have been suffering grapefruit mania. . .

It all started last week when I chanced upon the sweetest, most delectable grapefruit I'd eaten in my entire life--and my life has been far from devoid of grapefruit.

Since then, I have been dreaming about grapefruit, ogling grapefruit on Pinterest, budgeting how many grapefruits I could buy with my quarters instead of doing laundry, salivating over recipes that celebrate grapefruit (like this grapefruit crème brulee....)


And eating candied grapefruit peel until my tummy hurts. Self-control is a wonderful thing, but it has no place next to grapefruit.


Next time you end up with citrus peelings, give this recipe a try.


Candied Grapefruit Peel
Slightly modified from Lost Recipes by Marion Cunningham
  • One large grapefruit (or a handful of other citrus fruits)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  1. Wash and halve your grapefruit and scoop out the flesh (save it for later if you want; I just segmented and ate it right then and there.)
  2. Scrape out most of the pith. You don't want more than 1/8" left on the peel as it's pretty bitter. Cut your peel into strips about half an inch wide.
  3. Cover with cold water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil for five minutes and drain. Repeat this 3 or 4 more times to taste. You're drawing out the bitterness.
  4. After the final drain, wipe out your pan, stir the sugar and water in it until it dissolves, and then add the grapefruit peel. Bring to a rolling boil, stirring occasionally, and then reduce the heat to simmer. If you have a candy thermometer, 230*F should do it. (+see note)
  5. Cook till the peels are translucent, probably 15 or 20 minutes at a simmer.
  6. With a fork, transfer the peels to a sheet of waxed paper to cool. Optional: if they're pretty sticky, you could roll them in more sugar.


+ If you're at a high altitude, you should test and see what temperature your water boils at and adjust accordingly. For example, I live at about 5000ft, and my water boils at 200* instead of 212* (at least, according to my candy thermometer!), so I needed to heat my sugar water to about 218* instead of 230*. If you let it get too hot, the sugar may get clumpy and crystalize.


What are your favorite spring-time treats?