These sugar-coated citrus strips attract lots of compliments whenever I set them out at parties.
- 4 medium navel oranges
- 2 to 3 cups sugar, divided
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips, optional
- 2 teaspoons shortening, optional
- With a knife, score the peel from each orange into quarters. With fingers, remove peel and white pith attached. Place peel in a saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Boil, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Drain and repeat twice.
- Meanwhile, in another saucepan, combine 1 cup of sugar, water and salt. Bring to a boil; boil and stir for 2 minutes or until sugar is dissolved. Drain peel and add to syrup. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 50-60 minutes or until syrup is almost all absorbed, stirring occasionally. (Watch carefully to prevent scorching.) Drain any remaining syrup.
- Cool orange peel in a single layer on a foil-lined baking sheet for 1 hour. Cut into 1/8-in. to 1/4-in. strips. Sprinkle remaining sugar on an ungreased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. pan. Sprinkle strips over sugar; toss to coat. Let stand for 8 hours or overnight, tossing occasionally.
- If desired, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Dip one end of each orange strip into chocolate; allow excess to drip off. Let stand on waxed paper until set. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. Yield: 5 cups.
Originally published as Sugary Orange Peel in Country Woman Christmas Annual 1999, p37
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