Do you know that we can make different types of candies with fruits and their peels? These candies are used not only in the Christmas Fruit Cake, but also in desserts and ice-cream dressings. I propose to host shortly the Christmas Fruit Cake which would look as seen in the picture below. It takes time to make the candied items to get ready for Christmas Fruit Cake. Therefore let us learn to make some candied peels and fruit candies.
Candied Orange Peel
Peels of 2Oranges
Sugar - 300gms
Water - 150gms
When we bring oranges we peel the oranges, we either eat the orange segments or make juice and discard the peels. Peels have lot of flavor and hence are used in cakes and some dessert preparations. One can even make candies with the orange peels—these candied peels are used in fruit cakes. Let us learn to make candied orange peels. I have taken juice of two oranges and used their peels to make orange cake.
Take a bowl and add sufficient water to boil these orange peels. Heat the water and allow it to boil. Meanwhile cut the orange peels into pieces and remove the soft fiber attached to the peels with a knife. Similarly remove the fiber of the remaining orange peels. When water is boiling add the prepared peels and stir once to mix. Allow water to reach a boil. Cook the peels in boiling water for 10 minutes—(start the timer to count 10 minutes when water reaches a boil). After cooking for 10 minutes discard the water and add fresh water to the orange peels. Heat the bowl and let water start boiling. When water is boiling, cook the orange peels for 10 minutes once again. After 10 minutes discard the water and cover the bowl and keep it aside for a while. Heat a pan and add 150ml water and 300gms sugar and mix. Keep stirring till sugar dissolves. Once sugar is dissolved, lower the flame and add the cooked peels. Stir well and simmer for 10 minutes. When the mixture appears foamy the orange peels would be cooked to the right consistency. Switch off the flame and leave it in the same bowl for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes transfer the peels along with the syrup to another bowl and leave it overnight. Heat a bowl and add the orange peels along with the syrup and bring it to a boil. Once the syrup starts boiling reduce flame and simmer for 20 minutes. Switch off the flame and strain the mixture to separate candied orange peels from syrup. Spread the prepared peels in a plate so that they are not overlapping. Cool the peels completely. They would be soft, juicy and tasty. Once cooled cut them into pieces and use in cakes, as topping over ice creams etc. Store them in a clean and dry bottle in refrigerator till use.
Candied Lemon Peel:
For lemon juice we extract juice from fresh lemons and throw away the peels. Do not throw away those peels—instead cut them into pieces and remove the soft fiber attached to it. Prepared candied lemon peels following the procedure shown in candied orange peel. With lemony flavor these candied peels taste well. Cut the candied peels into pieces and use them in cakes or in any desserts to get the lemony flavor without the sourness of lemon.
Under fresh fruit candies let us learn to make pineapple candy. Take a fresh pineapple and twist the green leafy part to separate from the fruit. Using a sharp knife remove the skin of the pineapple. Take care while removing the skin as the fruit is juicy it slips and may cause bruises. After removing the peel slice the pineapple. One need not use the entire fruit to make candy---so let us see how we can store the remaining pineapple. Take two slices of pineapple and place them in zip lock bags. Place all the pineapple slices in zip lock bags and keep them in a bowl. Store the pineapple pieces by placing the bowl in freezer. As and when required remove pineapple slices (as much as needed) and make jam, juice or candy.
For fresh fruit pineapple candy, take:
Pineapple Slices – 4
Water – 150ml
Sugar – 300gms
Heat a pan and add water and sugar. Stir well till all the sugar is dissolved. When the sugar solution starts boiling add the pineapple pieces, reduce the flame and simmer for 10 minutes. The pineapple pieces appear floating—press with a ladle so that they soak the syrup while cooking. After 10 minutes of cooking, transfer the pineapple pieces along with the syrup to another bowl and leave it overnight. When kept overnight the pineapple pieces get shrunk releasing water into the syrup thus making the syrup thin. Heat a pan and add the pineapple pieces along with the syrup and bring it to a boil. When the syrup starts boiling, reduce the flame and cook the pineapple pieces for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes of cooking the pineapple pieces, strain them to separate from the syrup. Cool the leftover syrup to room temperature and store in a clean and dry bottle. The leftover syrup may be used only ONCE to make another candy. Thereafter use the leftover syrup in any gravy preparations to enhance taste. Spread the pineapple candies in a plate and cool completely. These candies would be juicy and taste good. Cut into pieces and store in bottles in refrigerator.
Instead of fresh pineapple one can even use frozen pineapple to make the candy. Remove pineapple pieces from freezer and thaw to remove the ice crystals. Make candy as mentioned in case of making candy using fresh pineapple pieces. Observe that the candy made with frozen pineapple pieces retains the shape and would be more juicy and tasty when compared with the candy made with fresh pineapple pieces. Use this candied pineapple pieces in cakes or as topping over desserts like custard or ice cream and enjoy.
With the leftover syrup from pineapple candy let us learn to make gooseberry candy. Take as many gooseberries as much required for the leftover syrup. Wash the gooseberries and dry them well. Cut the gooseberries along the lines appearing on it to get wedges. Remove the seeds and cut gooseberries into wedges. Heat the leftover syrup and bring it to boil. When the syrup is boiling add gooseberries and make candy as mentioned in pineapple candy making. As mouth fresheners these gooseberry candies taste good. They may even be added in cakes like fruit cake.
Plums – 6
Water – 150ml
Sugar – 300gms
Wash the plums and dry them. Cut each plum into wedges and remove the seeds. Plums resemble gooseberry in texture. Prepare candy with plum pieces following the procedure shown in pineapple candy making. Juicy and tasty plum candies are generally used in making fruit cakes during Christmas time.
With the leftover syrup after making plum candy let us learn to make Tuti Fruti using raw papaya. The leftover syrup gets a natural deep pink color from plums—making tuti fruiti with raw papaya gets the pink color from the syrup naturally. Wash, dry and peel raw papaya. Cut from the center and remove the seeds. Cut papaya into slice and remove the soft inner portion as shown in the movie. Cut the papaya into desired pieces. Take as many papaya pieces as much required for the leftover syrup. Heat a pan and add the syrup. Add papaya pieces and mix well. Though the syrup appears thick like jelly, after adding papaya pieces it becomes thin with the water oozed from the papaya pieces. Bring the syrup to a boil and reduce the flame. Simmer for 10 minutes and transfer the papaya pieces along with the syrup into another bowl and keep it overnight. Next day heat the pan and add the papaya pieces along with the syrup and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce flame and simmer for 20 minutes. Strain the mixture to separate the prepared tuti fruiti from the syrup. Spread the tuti fruiti in a plate and cool completely. Observe that the tuti fruiti gets a natural pink color from the leftover syrup of plum candy. Use this tuti fruiti in desserts like custard or ice cream and enjoy.
Using Leftover Syrup:
Observe the syrup left after making tuti fruiti. The syrup becomes too thick and appears like liquid glucose. Do not use this leftover syrup to make another candy as reheating this syrup makes it bitter. Instead store this syrup and add required amount to any gravy preparations like Aloo Matar, Paneer Matar or Navratan Koorma as a secret ingredient to enhance the taste and flavor --- Remember to add this after switching OFF the flame.
Store the prepared candies in clean and dry jars in refrigerator or prepare as and when required freshly.
Points To Remember:
Remember to cook the citrus peels in water twice for 10 minutes each time to remove any bitterness.
After preparing a candy use the leftover syrup to make another candy ONLY ONCE. Reheating the syrup thereafter makes it bitter. Instead use the leftover syrup in gravy preparations or cool drinks and consume. Add the syrup to the gravy dish after switching OFF the flame.
Always remember to use fresh fruits or fresh vegetables to release water while cooking in the syrup. Due to Osmosis, fruit/vegetable oozes water and absorbs the syrup. So the syrup should not be too thick.Add the candied peels and fruit candies in desserts or cakes to get an enhanced natural flavor.
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