Sunday, January 27, 2008

this weekend's major projects

Sat. am:

Volunteer at the Dane County Farmer's Market in downtown Madison, WI. With a group I joined last Summer called "Dine and Do Good," I helped make and serve breakfast to Farmers Market patrons (a fundraiser for Farmers' Market marketing and overhead). I was educated in the art of crepe making and put on duty for 2 hours of crepe mania! The breakfast was gorgeous and almost all from the farmers' produce!!

Sat. pm:

Run 10 miles. Marathon training is underway!

Sun. am:

Clean house! Make grapefruit candy! ever had it? Time consuming to make, mouth consuming to taste! Here's the recipe:

10 grapefruit halves (insides eaten, pull out the membranes so that only the white pith and outer skin is left)
plenty of water! (amounts noted in instructions)
3 c. white sugar
3/4 c. rum (Not usually in the recipe, but my special addition - more is better)
1 1/2 c. white sugar in a large mixing bowl
3 2 ft. sheets waxed paper (for cooling & drying)

1. cut the grapefruit rinds into 1/4" wedge pieces - bite-size candy!
divide into 2 piles and place in 2 large skillets/pans (i don't have a giant pan, so I use my 2 largest ones) with 2 c. water each. Heat on high until boiling and turn heat down to simmer for 30 min. Pour off water, add 2 c. new water, and round 2 of 30 min. cooking. Do this one more time for round 3! This boiling of the rind helps release most of the acidity that makes citrus rind awful to eat raw.

2. After the rind has been cooked, drain it and put it back in the 2 lg. pans with 1 1/2 c. sugar, half the rum per skillet and 1 1/2 c. water. All the while stirring, cook this mixture down, gradually cooking off all of the water. Don't leave the 10 ft. radius around this project - KEEP STIRRING. If you have a candy thermometer, use it as the mixture thickens to a syrupy texture. Still stirring. When the mixture reaches 200 F, Soft Crack (as the thermometer might note), or the bubbles on the bottom of the pan start to finally stop bubbling, time to take the mixture OFF THE HEAT! Stirring...

3. As quickly as possible, toss the candied rind in the bowl of sugar to coat and separate the individual bits of candy. Place the pieces, not touching too much, on waxed paper to cool completely before storing in airtight container!

Bonus! Keep all that sugar from the toss and whatever bits are left on the waxed paper. I use it to make citrus sugar cookies or throw into Vanilla ice-cream!!

My Dad and his grandmother used to make this. He still makes it most years. I'm going to carry the tradition I reckon.

Sun. pm:

work on BLINK application. Dinner at Harvest - it's Madison Restaurant week!!!

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