Saturday, April 13, 2013

Confit, Or Not Confit

One of my favorite things to make is Citrus Confit.  I'm not quite sure why, but I find it relaxing to make, plus, its a good way to use up lemons and oranges that are on the brink of spoiling.

Confit.  On more than one occasion someone has asked me what it is.  Most traditionally, a confit is a meat that is cooked and then stored in it's own fat - duck being the meat of choice.  However, the confit I am referring to is  fruit or vegetable that has been cooked until tender in a seasoned liquid.

Citrus Confit is one of the easiest things to go about making and can make a big statement when served on some complimentary-flavored ice cream, cake or even fish or chicken.  Not only does it add a sweet, citrusy flavor, it's super elegant looking, too!

Citrus Confit
2 large oranges
3 lemons
1 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt

1. Cut the skin off the lemons and oranges using a small pairing knife by starting at the top and carefully cutting towards the bottom.  The goal is to get slices that are at least 1 1/2 inches in length.  Also, try to stay as close to the edge of the fruit as possible to avoid excess pith.

2. Still using a sharp pairing knife, carefully remove as much of the pith as possible, leaving just the outer skin.

3. Slice the skin longways into very thin slices and place into a medium saucepan filled with a couple of inches of could water.

4. Bring the water to a boil and strain.  Refill the saucepan with cold water, put the citrus back into the pot and bring to a boil.  Repeat this process one more time.

5. After you've strained the citrus a third time, add the water, sugar and salt to the saucepan and place over a high heat.  Allow to come to a simmer making sure the salt and sugar are completely desolved.  (Congratulations, you've just made a simple syrup!)

6.  Add the citrus to the simmering simple syrup and cook on a low flame until the skin becomes translucent.  (This means the syrup has penetrated the skin and it is now candied.)

7. Using the tines of a fork, transfer the confit to a mason jar.  Add the (now citrus flavored) syrup to the jar and fill leaving just a quarter inch from the top.  Place on the lid and let cool to room temperature before storing in the fridge.  Citrus Confit can last for months in the fridge.

Lemon Confit on Citrus Loaf

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