Make their jaws drop. You can impress friends and family with a little slice of exotic heaven. The next time you give a gift or decide to host, offer up a jar of this rendition on Mexican candied fruit. Making candy from scratch can sound like quite the ordeal. But if you make candied fruit, well then the goodness of nature takes out half the battle—the sweet succulence of the fruit meat takes the place of tons of ingredients required in normal candy making. When you deal with fruit, it’s all set and ready to be simmered up in a simple syrup, then quickly rolled in a sugary mix for crystallized perfection.
I’m going to show you how to candy both the peel and the fruit. Candying the peel is a little more time consuming, but both are very simple processes, and shouldn’t take you more than an hour. You can candy any fruit, so pick to your liking, or go for any of these traditional favorites. Now get slicin’!Orange (candied fruit + peel) Pear Papaya Pineapple Kiwi figs 6 cups granulated sugar ¼ tsp chili powder 3 tbsp cinnamon
Cut the rind away from the pineapple. Peel the pear and papaya with a peeler or pairing knife, and cut the kiwi in half and remove it from the skin with a spoon. Slice all the fruit into one inch chunks. For the orange peel, slice the peel away following the curve of the fruit. Julienne and keep the pieces about 1/4 inch wide.
Put the peel into a large pot of cool fresh water. Bring it to a rolling boil then immediately transfer it to drain in a colander. Repeat this with fresh water one to three times. If you taste the blanched peel, once it’s tender it’s ready to set aside. Slice orange fruit into one inch chunks. Keep the figs whole.
Make the simple syrup by mixing five cups of water and five cups of sugar in a saucepan. Bring it to a boil so the sugar dissolves, stir, then take it off the heat and let it cool a tiny bit. Dump the blanched peel and all the fruit into the warm syrup, then put back on the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes (less time for smaller pieces). The fruit and rinds should become translucent and taste sweet and tender. Drain them in a strainer. Make them extra crystallized by rolling them in a Mexican sugar mixture, with the chili powder, cinnamon, and extra cup of sugar.