Masterclass — Candied Citrus

A simple and easy recipe for making your own candied citrus for holiday baking.

Use in the HOLIDAY STOLLEN recipe pages 20 – 21 in EAT Nov|Dec


Homemade candied citrus is far better than store-bought and surprisingly easy to make. Simply blanch orange and lemon peels in boiling water (to extract some of the bitterness), then poach in syrup until translucent. Candied citrus can be prepared weeks in advance, and you can always make a double batch to dip in chocolate and give away as gifts.

Candied Citrus 

Makes about 1½ cups sliced or ¾ cup chopped.

1 organic lemon

1 organic orange

1¾ cups granulated sugar, divided

1½ cup water

Slice a bit off the bottom and top of the lemon and orange to stabilize them on your cutting board. Using a sharp knife, cut away the peel, from the stem end (it’s OK if the white pith is still attached). Cut the peels into thin slices a generous ¼ inch thick. (If they’re too thin, they’ll become tough.) Reserve the citrus segments for another use.

Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Add the sliced peels and boil 2-3 minutes. (This helps remove the bitterness.) Remove the peels with a slotted spoon and discard the water. 

 Place a cup of water and a silicone pastry brush near the stove.

 Combine 1½ cups sugar and 1½ cups fresh water in the same saucepan and heat until the sugar is dissolved, stirring occasionally. Add the blanched (boiled) peels and simmer over very low heat until the citrus is transparent, about 45-60 minutes.

 To prevent the sugar from crystallizing (and clumping), wash away any bits of sugar that stick to the sides of your pan with a wet pastry brush. Keep an eye on the sugar as crystallization can ruin the sugar. 

 Carefully remove the citrus strips from the syrup, using a fork or tongs, and allow to dry on a cooling rack set over a sheet or parchment or waxed paper (to catch the syrup). Ensure the candied fruit pieces are separated and not touching. 

 Place the remaining sugar in a small bowl. When the citrus strips are cool enough to handle, dip them in the sugar.  They should be dry but chewy.

 Store in a sealed container for up to a month. 

 If using chopped citrus peel in your stollen: place the citrus pieces in a fine-mesh strainer to shake off any excess sugar before using.


To make chocolate-dipped citrus peel: place 4 oz finely chopped dark chocolate in a heat-resistant bowl set over a small saucepan filled with an inch of simmering water. (The bowl should not touch the water.) When the chocolate starts to melt, remove it from the heat and stir until completely melted. Working with one peel at a time, dip into the melted chocolate, about halfway down.

 Transfer to a sheet of parchment to cool. Store in a covered container in a cool place.

 Reserve the excess chocolate for another use.



Images: Deb Garlick

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