Eats shoots & leaves
These candied oranges are totemic of a bonked-up, hipster lifestyle. Yes indeedy. Think of them as the modern-day jaffa cake. Each chewy bite somersaults into my body's engine room and rewires my dimples. Fact.
Blood oranges seem sweeter to me, and as rare as rubies. It's a short January-to-March orgy, so get your fill. Their deep, dark flesh is home to lots of anthocyanins, which readers of this column will recognise as specially commissioned inflammation assassins. We like.
Inflammation can be anything from headaches to hangovers, and from bruises to bronchitis. It's important to stress that orange juice is a different beast altogether, devoid, as it is, of the nutritious peel and pith.
Leaving the white pith and skin on these candies is a brave move, but one which will reap extra ninja moves and nutrition (any bitterness will be neutralised by the sweet syrup anyway). You'll be rewarded with a tastier snack, as well as an impressive cargo of limonoids and polyphenols such as heart-healthy hesperidin.
Beat that, jaffa cake!
You will need:
2 organic blood oranges
200g caster sugar (you won't actually be using all this sugar with the end result)
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
200g dark chocolate, melted
1 Wash the blood oranges. Slice them thinly, discarding the butts.
2 In a large shallow pan, bring 300ml of water to a happy gurgle. Stir in the caster sugar and the ground cardamom until they dissolve.
3 Immerse the blood orange slices into the syrup and simmer them for 30 minutes, turning them halfway through. I like to swirl the syrup over the orange slices several times throughout the cooking time.
4 Once the orange slices are cooked, gently lift them out of the syrup and leave them to drain on a wire rack for 20 minutes. (Pop some parchment paper underneath, to catch the dripping).
5 Transfer the orange slices to an oven preheated to 100°C, 210°F, Gas ¼. Leave them to air dry in the oven for 2 hours. You'll need to check them by taking the odd nibble occasionally, and seeing if they're ready to coat in chocolate. Don't panic about overcooking them - the oven is at such a low temperature!
6 Once the orange slices are ready, remove them from the oven. If they are too wet, the chocolate will struggle to stick. A little bit tacky is perfect. Fully submerge each candied slice into the melted dark chocolate. Place the chocolate-coated orange slices on non-stick parchment paper. Leave them to set in a cool room.
Sunday Indo Living