Caramelised fresh oranges:
Prep: 20 mins.
Cooking: 10 mins.
Serves: Depends on how many oranges you can eat. 1 each?
Rating: 3: Moderate – Segmenting the oranges can be fiddly, but a skill that can be quite quickly learnt……..
- 6-8 large oranges
- 250g/9oz white/golden caster sugar
- 200ml/7fl oz hot water
- Pare the zest from two oranges and cut into very fine shreds (or do it the easy way if you have a zester).
- Heat a small pan of water until boiling, drop the orange zest into the water and simmer for two minutes. Drain through a sieve into a small bowl. You want to retain the blanched zest, not the water.
- Peel all the oranges by cutting the skin, white pith and inner skin away, to reveal the flesh of the orange.
- Using a very sharp knife, cut the first segment out of the orange, sliding the knife down between the skin and its flesh on either side then easing it out. Carry on working your way around the orange, cutting out the segments. (You may prefer to use a small knife for this, or a large 10” chef’s knife – your choice).
- Put the segments and juice into a shallow serving bowl. Repeat the process with the remaining oranges until all are segmented.
- Heat a wide, heavy-based pan over a moderate heat. Add the sugar and leave for a few minutes, keeping a careful eye over it, until the sugar begins to melt. Don’t stir. Restrain yourself and do no more than tip and tilt the pan to get the sugar to melt evenly.
- Once the sugar is liquid, let it bubble gently, then more strongly, until it begins to brown (this may take as little as 2-3 minutes), still tilting and swirling the pan occasionally.
- Once the sugar has caramelised to a hazelnut brown, pour the measured hot water into the pan. Do this at arm’s length, wearing an oven glove (hard hat, overalls & goggles…..oh yes, and wellies!). But seriously, take care with hot sugar syrup. Be very careful, as the caramel will ‘hit and spiss’ when you first add the water.
- Swirl and stir the caramel syrup and turn the heat to low. Drop in the blanched shreds of orange zest and leave to simmer for 5-10 minutes, until the zest is translucent. You may need to add a bit more water if the caramel thickens too much.
- Pour the hot syrup and shreds over the orange segments and leave to cool.