The Saturday Paper

FOOD: Candied peel.

- Annie Smithers

– 3 oranges

– 4 lemons

– 1 ruby grapefruit – 1 yellow grapefruit – granulated sugar

Use a sharp paring knife or a sturdy peeler to peel strips of skin from all the fruit, leaving a good amount of pith attached.

Put the peel in a pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for five minutes. Drain, return to the pan and cover with fresh water. Bring to the boil again, then simmer for another five minutes. Repeat this process five times to remove the bitterness from the peel.

Set a sieve over a bowl and drain the peel, reserving the cooking water. Add 100 grams of sugar for each 100 millilitre­s of water that remains. Place the sugar and reserved citrus water into a saucepan and gently heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

Cut the blanched peel into strips about four millimetre­s thick.

Add the peel to the sugar syrup and simmer for 30 minutes until the peel is translucen­t and soft. Leave to cool in the syrup, then remove with a slotted spoon and arrange in a layer on a stainless-steel rack set over a tray to catch the drips. Put in the oven at the lowest setting for 30 minutes to dry, or leave overnight in a dry space.

Sprinkle a layer of sugar over a sheet of baking paper. Toss the strips of peel in the sugar, a few at a time, then spread out and leave for one hour or so to air-dry.

Pack the peel into an airtight jar or container lined with baking paper.

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