Green Door Hospitality

Adventures in Everyday Entertaining

Elegant and Affordable: Candied Lemon Zest

Candied Lemon Zest

Candied Zest is an elegant addition to any dessert tray — either on its own, or as a garnish.  This also makes a lovely hostess gift!

I will warn you that this is a simple recipe to make, however it does take quite a bit of time so make sure to plan ahead of time.  Shown above is Candied Lemon Zest that I made for our Citrus-Themed Party recently.  This recipe also will work wonderful with limes and oranges!

Candied Lemon Zestfrom Cooking Light Magazine

  • 2 medium-sized lemons (limes or oranges work great as well)
  • 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 2 Tbs water

Use a sharp vegetable peeler to remove zest from citrus (reserve fruit for another use).

Scrape bitter white pith from the back of the peel with a small pairing knife.  Discard pith.

Cut peel into 1/4 inch thick strips about 3 inches in length.  (Yield about 40 strips per fruit).

Combine 1/4 cup sugar and 2 Tablespoons of water in a saucepan to make a simple syrup.

Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar dissolves.

Add peel, cover, and reduce heat.  Simmer for 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool completely.

Strain through a sieve, shaking off extra moisture to prevent clumping.  Reserve liquid to be used as ‘Lemon Simple Syrup’.

Separate pieces of rind.  Allow to air-dry on a sheet of wax paper.

Place remaining 1/4 cup sugar and citrus strips in a bowl.  Toss well to coat.

Serve either on their own, or as a garnish.  OR — put in a small mason jar and give as a hostess gift.

17 comments on “Elegant and Affordable: Candied Lemon Zest

  1. the Painted Apron
    February 11, 2013

    hey Kenley, I accidently left my comment on your waffle post! whoops, anyway, I love this tutorial, thanks so much! There’s a bunch of lemon recipes I want to try and this is going to be a perfect go with…love the gift idea too!

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      Jenna, So glad that you like this! Think it will go perfect with your other citrus recipes! 🙂

  2. gotasté
    February 11, 2013

    I always buy pre-packed ones which has lost all the taste of the zest. They are just sweet. These look so good. I should try it soon. Thank you for sharing Kenley.

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      You’re quite welcome Danny!! 🙂 The fresh, homemade candied zest is so flavorful!

  3. lulu
    February 11, 2013

    What are some ideas for using the finished product?

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      These are very tasty on their own. They also work good as a decoration on cupcakes or cakes (Mmmm… a lemon tea cake with candied zest!!). The zest also does well with cocktail garnishes, as well as a garnish when serving tea!

  4. Cloches & Lavender
    February 11, 2013

    These look really good and pretty easy, I think I should try these out. How do you use them?

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      Thanks! They are quite delicious on their own. They also work well as garnish for cupcakes, cakes, and cocktails (the three big “C’s”, lol).

  5. The Liquid Culture Project
    February 11, 2013

    Discard liquid!? Lemon simple syrup! Great for use in a tea or cocktail, and these would make wonderful garnishes. Naturally, that was my first thought 🙂

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      You are so, so right! I just changed the instructions to say “reserve for Lemon Simple Syrup”. Thanks so much for pointing that out!! 🙂

  6. petit4chocolatier
    February 11, 2013

    Thousand times yummy!!! Exactly Kenley, perfect for a gift or garnish! Love it 🙂

  7. thethinkingcloset
    February 12, 2013

    My ears perk up at the word “candied.” And I chuckle to think that I didn’t know what lemon zest was just a few years ago (hadn’t done much cooking before I got married). I just thought, whatever it was, it sounded fun! And this recipe is an affirmation of that. Looks amazing!

    • Green Door Hospitality
      February 12, 2013

      You are so right — zest is just such a fun word! Never really thought about that from a “non-cooking perspective”. Let’s just ZEST everything!!! 😉

  8. tickledpink
    February 13, 2013

    Yummy. I’m making this right now and the syrup is soooo good! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  9. Pingback: Elegant and Affordable: Pound Cake with Candied Lemon Zest | Green Door Hospitality

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