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​Candied Orange Peel and Orange Peel and Ginger Shrub



 This recipe comes via Umbria and Letitia Mattiacci, whose cookbook A Kitchen with a View is filled with regional homestyle Italian food. Her Alla Madonna del Piatto Agritourissimo and Cooking School are worth a trip to Italy…

To make the Candied Orange Peel:

12 organic unwaxed oranges with a thick skin

 8 cups sugar

Halve and juice the oranges; save the juice for another use. Place the peels in the pan and cover with cold water.

Boil for 3 minutes then drain. Repeat this process 3 times.

When the drained peels are cool enough to handle, scrape out the white membrane with a metal spoon and discard. Cut the peels into 1/2” strips and set aside.

In a large shallow pan, bring 8 cups water and 6 of the cups of sugar to a poil. Add the peels, reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally until the peels are tender and translucent (about 1 1/2-3 hours, depending on the thickness of the peel). Keep heat low enough and watch the mixture to prevent the sugar from caramelizing or turning brown.

Remove the peels with a slotted spoon and spread out in a single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper.* When they have cooled to room temperature, toss with 1 cup of sugar to coat. Let them dry for a day. The next day they should be soft, but dry. If they are still sticky, toss with the remaining 1/2-1 cup of sugar.

To preserve for cooking, leave them on the tray for several more days until they are completely dry and brittle. Transfer to a box, cover loosely with parchment or waxed paper, and keep in a dry cupboard, where they should last for up to a year.

*Save the leftover orange flavored syrup to make a delicious beverage!

Orange Peel and Ginger Shrub

Similar to an Italian soda, a “shrub” or sipping vinegar is added to sparkling water to make a refreshing drink

Add 1/4 cup of fresh grated ginger and 1 cup of Sweetlife Farm or other natural Apple Cider Vinegar to 1 cup of warm syrup left over from making candied orange peel.

Place it in a quart covered mason jar at room temperature for 3 days, then refrigerate

Pour 1-2 oz of the orange/ginger/vinegar syrup over ice and top with sparkling water. Stir, garnish with candied orange peel and enjoy! An ounce of rum or vodka transforms this into an artisan adult beverage…..