On a recent trip to the Cayman Islands I discovered a, new to me, delicious dry fruit mixture in the supermarket that is now my new favorite. The recipe is this simple.
1 box raisins (12 oz.)
1 box golden raisins (about 12 oz.)
1 box currents (about 12 oz.)
Candied orange rind from one orange.
Here's how to make your own candied orange rind.
- Peel one orange by scoring and removing the peel. I, specifically, ask you NOT to use a peeler or zester. I like the chewiness of the full rind.
- Note: "The pith of the orange — the white part between the skin and fruit — can be sour or bitter but actually contains just as much vitamin C as the fruit itself, with a good deal of fiber," Flores When you boil it the bitterness disappears.
- Cut the rind into 1/4" strips. Put strips in cool water in a pan and bring to boil over high heat. Drain the water from the peels and repeat this process twice more.
- In a small bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups sugar and 3/4 cup water.
- Pour into a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer. Let the mixture cook for 8-9 minutes at a constant simmer.
- Add the peel and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour, OR just until the peels are translucent, adjusting heat as necessary to maintain the simmer. Avoid stirring, as this will cause crystallation. If necessary, swirl the pan to make sure that all of the peels get covered with the syrup.
- Drain any remaining syrup from the peels and set aside for other use (perhaps tea, Sangria, or favorite adult beverage?!) There will probably be only a tablespoon or two of syrup left. Spread the peels out on a drying rack and leave to dry for 4-5 hours. Store in an airtight container or cut into 1/4" squares and mix into dry raisins/currents mixture.
Note: I've made a Lara-type bar with this mixture. I've also added it to an Italian biscotti recipe. With your favorite nuts mixed in it makes a great trail mix!
Of Interest: Out of curiosity, upon returning from Grand Cayman, I looked up this commercial mix of dry fruits and orange peel. I found that it is used to make fruitcake! We were traveling in April and, as such, did not come across fruitcake. We DID come across plenty of rum cake, however and a great recipe for Cayman rum fruitcake!
Special: If you want my recipes for my Lara-type bar, my biscotti or Cayman fruitcake, just say so and I'll print them in further postings.