Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Candied grapefruit peel

Where do I begin. Candied grapefruit peel is a hard one for me to admit to taking on as a project.

Baking bread and signing up to ride 204 miles on my bike in one day, no biggie. Taking the time to candy a bitter peel that could prove to be disastrous is intimidating but equally intriguing.


Meyer Lemons

Blood Oranges

Any type of oranges...

These citrus all make beautiful candied peels.

I had to choose grapefruit peels as my first experiment in candied peels.

We had a 10 pound bag of grapefruit, I had grapefruit on the mind lately. I think about grapefruit.

At first I was skeptical. Skeptical as in when you get a chunk of that white pith in a bite of perfectly tart grapefruit, how could that turn into an edible treat? A grapefruit has the potential pucker factor of 11 on a scale 1 to 10.

When Deb at Smitten Kitchen, the goddess of all things nummy, photographed them but had to trash them due to a foul taste, was I warned... nope. I saved the rind of four grapefruit and went on the search for a recipe. I asked Foodista and instantly got a few responses that inspired some confidence to go through with such a bizarre endeavor.

It was a gray and cold day in the middle of a long Washington winter in the desert. I had been squirreling away grapefruit peel in my fridge and had to admit to the fact that I was actually going to create something with what most people trash. With no desire to step foot outside, I entered the kitchen, face to face with a mighty project.

With a sharp double bladed knife, I removed as much of the pith as possible, leaving just the colorful and fragrant peel that I proceeded to boil, drain, rinse, simmer in sugar, and finally drenched in more sugar.

The result......

Beautiful, colorful, fragrant grapefruit peel that will garnish cocktails, speckle muffins and cookies and sit and look all pretty in our fridge

The end of a happy little story.

Unless you have some good ideas about how to use candied grapefruit peel in ways that shrivel my liver with booze.

Candied Grapefruit Peel

Loosely adapted from Food and Wine

Remove as much as the pith from the peel as you can. Pith is gross even with sugar.  Cut the peels into what ever size suits your needs, I left mine large, up to 1"wide, some were smaller, avoid large pieces.

4 grapefruit peels, pith removed and cut into strips of desired shape

1 cup sugar + more for dusting

1 cup water + more for boiling

In a large, non reactive pot bring 2 cups of water to a boil, add peel and boil for 1 minute. Drain in a strainer and rinse under cold water.

Return pot to medium heat with 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water and peel. Cook, uncovered until the liquid is nearly gone, the peel should be almost translucent.

Using tongs dredge each strip into a shallow bowl of sugar to coat all sides. Let cool on a wire rack and store in an air tight container in the fridge.



  1. Hey there! Looks like it turned out great! We have a HUGE box of Texas Grapefruits...I might just candy some peel this weekend :)

    Happy Baking!

  2. Love homemade candied citrus peel. I must make it again using grapefruit next time.

  3. Very nice! Just found you through girlichef and BBD #36.

  4. Keaton - Give it a whirl then tell me how it goes!
    Elra - Citrus peel is so yummy and the season is now for them!
    Melynda - Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Oh man, these are gorgeous! I've always wanted to candy some citrus peel, but for some reason always put it off. Wish I could just have a shimmering jar of yours... ;)