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Fruits, Crystalized

Florida Fruits and Vegetables in the Commercial Menu


Directions for crystallizing fruit when it is desired to keep the fruit for a long period of time:

Preparation of Fruit—All citrus fruits should be of a bright color, without blemish and with thick peel. Grapefruit, lemon, oranges and limes must be grated sufficiently to break the oil cells. The bitter in the peel is removed by putting the peel on in cold water, letting it come to a boil, and then by draining off, changing the water and starting over each time with cold water. The number of changes depends on the individual taste. The peel should be tender before it goes into the sirup.

Kumquats—Wash, treat with a hot soda bath (one tablespoon of soda to one pound of fruit). Cover with boiling water. Let stand until cool. Wash in clear water. Make a small slit in the sides of the kumquats, cutting through the seed cells. Cover with water, then cook until tender before putting into the sirup.

Pineapples—Peel, cut in one-half inch slices, core and boil until tender.

Fig, Watermelon Rind and Other Fruits—Treat and boil as you would in preparing for preserves.

Quick Method for Immediate Consumption

Make a thin sirup, 2 parts water, 1 part sugar, sufficient to cover the fruit after the sirup is cooked down). Put fruit on and cook until clear. Cook down to 220° F. first day. Let stand in this sirup for at least 24 hours. Then cook to 228° F.; take out, shape and put in sun to dry. When partially dry roll in granulated sugar and put back in sun or in a good place to dry.

Continued Method for Marketing

To make a marketable product when the fruit is cooked to 226° F. put in jars and process for 15 minutes. Seal and keep this preserve until you are ready to crystallize it. To finish product make a 222° F. sirup and put the drained fruit into the sirup and cook to 226° F. Drain, shape and place in the sun to dry. When partially dry roll in granulated sugar. This method will take longer to dry, but the product will keep much longer.

Coloring and flavoring may be used, but it cheapens the product and causes the fruit to lose its identity if overdone. Eight drops of any standard vegetable coloring to the pound of sugar put into the sirup is sufficient to give a delicate shade to the finished product. If flavoring is used, add to the product the last five minutes of cooking.

For pineapple, whole limes, etc., preserve in 235° sirup and finish in 250° sirup. As soon as the desired temperature is reached, remove from fire and stir until moderately cool. Remove the fruit, which will be coated in fondant, and dry.

Grapefruit Peel Strips.

1 lb. grapefruit peel
6 tablespoons liquid { 3 fruit juice, 3 water
1 lb. sugar

Preparation of Peel—Select bright fruit with thick peel. Wash carefully. Grate lightly on an ordinary grater to break the oil cells. Cut this peel into strips that are ¼ to ½ inch in width: or into small shapes. To remove the bitter, place in pan of cold water and let come to a boil. Change as many times as necessary, starting each time in cold water. When fruit is tender, drain and weigh.

For each pound of peel add 1 pound of sugar and 1 tablespoons of liquid; cook until the sirup is absorbed. Remove from the tire and roll in granulated sugar and lay on platter to dry.

Finishing Point—If cooking is continued for too long a period of time and evaporation carried too far, the product will be hard and unattractive. The point at which the product is finished may determined by rolling a piece of the fruit, when it has become transparent, in granulated sugar. If, after a few minutes, the fruit stiffens enough to retain its shape, it is sufficiently cooked. A strip of the peel is preferred to the small shapes in making this test.

Note—If it is desired to give variety in appearance to the finished product, the peel may be cut into small attractive shapes, before being boiled. Vegetable coloring may be added to the syrup in which which the peel is crystallized. Mint, ginger or other flavoring may be blended with the grapefruit flavor by adding to the sirup.

Orange Sugar for Flavoring.

  1. Grate off the thin yellow rind of oranges, being careful not to get any of the bitter white underneath. Then place in a preserving jar and cover with a thick layer of granulated sugar. Screw the top on tight. The sugar will absorb the aromatic oil and can then be used both for sweetening and flavoring.
  2. With a thin, sharp knife peel off the yellow rind (only); dry it on plates in the sun or a slow oven. Add to the perfectly dry rind of six oranges, one-half pound of granulated sugar: grind to a powder; sift several times and place in airtight jars for using. One tablespoon of this will flavor one quart of custard or sauce.

Orange Mint Paste.

3 tablespoons granulated gelatin, 2 cups sugar
1/3 cup orange juice, ¾ cup cold water,
½ cup minced mint leaves, 1 tablespoon lemon juice,
6 drops peppermint essence, Green coloring

Allow gelatin to stand in fruit juice until liquid is absorbed. Place sugar, water and mint in a saucepan over low heat until sugar is dissolved, add gelatin and boil for 20 minutes. Color and turn mixture into a bread pan. Allow to stiffen over night, sift powdered sugar over the past, loosen at the edges and remove to a board dredged with powdered sugar. Cut in cubes and roll in sugar.

Orange Squares.

2 tablespoons gelatin, 2 tablespoons lemon juice,
¼ cup cold water, 4 tablespoons nut meats,
1 cup sugar, ¼ cup orange juice,
½ cup nut meats, ¾ cup hot water,
Grated rind 1 orange,  

Soak the gelatin in the cold water. Chop the nuts fine or put through a meat chopper and add first amount to gelatin. Add the fruit juices and grated orange rind. Make a syrup of the sugar and hot water and cook to the soft ball stage 238 degrees F. Remove from the fire and add gelatin and nut mixture. Return to the fire and boil about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally over a moderate heat. Remove

Orange Balls.

Soak orange peels three days in cold water, changing the water daily. Then boil until soft. Drain, wipe dry, chop fine and measure. Take an equal amount of sugar and for each third of a cup of sugar add two tablespoons each of water and butter. Boil until the soft ball stage is reached, or 238 degrees F. Add chopped peel, boil a minute or two longer, cool and pull out on a board, sprinkle with granulated sugar and shape into small balls. These may be rolled in coarse sugar and allowed to dry or they may be dipped in fondant flavored with vanilla. They are also delicious dipped in chocolate.

Excerpt from Stennis, M.A., "Crystalized Fruits" Florida Fruits and Vegetables in the Commercial Menu, State of Florida Department of Agriculture, Tallahassee, September, 1931, pgs 95-97.

Keywords: canning fruit, cooking, fruit crystalization, preserving fruit, recipes


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