Perfect for use in festive baking, fruit cakes, fruit buns, and more.
Mixed peel is very difficult to find in North America. I like to use it when baking fruit cakes and fruit buns, and especially when it comes to traditional English festive recipes.
The traditional fruits to use are lemons and oranges and this is a very simple recipe. One advantage is that you can freeze it in small batches so it will be there just when you need it.
Homemade Traditional Mixed Peel
Preparation time: 50 minutes
Cooking time: 35 minutes
Standing time: 2–3 days
5average sized citrus fruits, traditionally lemons and oranges
280g(10 oz) granulated sugar (1½ cups)
Wash the fruit, scrubbing the peel, and then cut each fruit in half.
Squeeze the juice from the fruit which can then be refrigerated and used in other recipes.
Now cut each piece of fruit in half again so you are working with a quarter piece.
With a sharp knife, scrape out all the remaining fruit segments, leaving as much of the pith as possible.
Then cut the peel into approximately 0.75 cm (¼ inch) wide pieces and put in a large pan.
Add water to the pan so it just covers the peel and then bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Drain as much of the liquid as possible by using a colander and then tip the peel back into the pan.
Repeat the process by just covering the peel with fresh water. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Now, drain off the liquid again, but this time reserve 120 ml (4 fl oz) (½ cup).
Put the peel in a bowl and leave on one side.
Now pour the reserved liquid into the pan and add 120 ml (4 fl oz) (½ cup) water.
Take two thirds of the sugar, 190 g (6½ oz) (1 cup), and add it to the pan.
Gently bring the liquid to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
Once the sugar syrup has come to a boil, pour it over the peel. Cover the bowl and leave to stand overnight.
Next day, transfer the peel, the liquid, and remaining sugar to a pan. Stir over a low heat until the sugar dissolves.
Then bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and drain well.
Spread the peel out on two large baking trays/sheets covered with baking paper/parchment. Leave to dry. This can take 24–48 hours. Occasionally move the peel about with a fork to keep the pieces separate.
It can now be stored in the fridge for up to one month or divided into small batches and put in snap lock freezer bags and frozen.
I have been making this potato salad for many years and it has now become a great family favourite.Cubed cooked potatoes and quartered boiled eggs are added to a seasoned mayonnaise which also incorporates diced celery, sliced green onions, and chopped parsley. It is a great addition to any salad or as an accompaniment to cold meats.
Angie's Potato Salad
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
900g(2 lb) waxy potatoes (about 6 medium)
240ml(8 fl oz) mayonnaise (1 cup)
1celery stick, diced
3spring/green onions, thinly sliced (¼ cup)
2tbspfresh flat leaf/Italian parsley, chopped
You will also need a large serving bowl.
Peel and cut the potatoes into even-sized chunks. Simmer in a pan of boiling, salted water for 20 minutes until just tender.
The eggs need to be hard boiled, so add them to the pan with the potatoes after the potatoes have been cooking for 10 minutes and that way a second pan can avoid being used.
Once the potatoes and eggs are cooked, lift the eggs from the pan and pop them in a bowl of cold water to keep the yolks golden.
Drain the potatoes, leave to steam dry and become cool.
Meanwhile, in the serving bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, cider vinegar, mustard, celery seed, salt, diced celery, sliced onions, and chopped parsley.
Now cut the potatoes into roughly 1 inch cubes and add to the bowl. Gently stir them into the mayonnaise so they are well coated.
Finally remove the shells from the eggs and cut each one in half and then into three. Carefully stir half ino the potato salad and then decorate the top with the remaining half.
*The best potatoes for roasting in the UK are Maris Piper, Désirée, and King Edward.
Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)
Wash and thinly peel potatoes. If the potatoes are large, cut in half then cut each half into thirds.
Place them in a large pan and cover with cold water. Add a good pinch of salt. Bring the water to the boil and then simmer for 7–8 minutes.
Drain well and leave the potatoes in the pan for 2 minutes, without the lid, to steam and dry. Then replace the lid and shake the pan to roughen up the surface of the potatoes.
Either heat the oil or the goose or duck fat in a roasting tin/pan and heat for 3–4 minutes until sizzling. Add potatoes and turn to coat.
Pop in the oven and roast for 15 minutes, then sprinkle over the sea salt. Roast for a further 45 minutes, turning halfway through, or until golden and crispy round the edges.
If cooking them at the same time as roasting meat in the oven, roast above the meat and allow 1¼ hours. Then while the meat is resting, raise the temperature to 220°C (425°F) (gas 7) and roast for a further 20 minutes or until golden and crispy round the edges.
Sprinkle a tablespoon of flour over the potatoes before adding them to the oil or fat to produce an extra crunchy potato.
For added flavour, sprinkle over a little thyme or a couple of garlic cloves (peeled and halved).
Very quick to prepare, garlic bread by the slice is very handy when a whole garlic baguette isn’t needed.
Garlic Bread by the Slice
Preparation time: About 5 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
2garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
115g(4 oz) butter, softened (½ cup, or 1 stick)
2tspchopped fresh parsley
Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6)
Mix together the garlic, parsley, and butter.
Now spread the garlic butter over one side of each slice of bread.
Arrange on a baking tray and cover with foil.
Bake in the oven for 10–15 minutes, removing the foil halfway through cooking.
*For the Italian bread
Take one loaf of Italian bread and remove the crusts from both ends. Cut into slices, about 1.25 cm (½ inch) thick. Separate the number of slices usually required for a meal by a piece of baking parchment. (This makes it easier to remove just a few slices at a time from the freezer to thaw.) Wrap the bread and freeze in a suitable container.
When needed just thaw the required number of slices and follow the recipe above.
We enjoy lovely home-baked bread and if you would like to bake your own, you could follow Paul’s recipe for Crusty French Bread which works just as well as the Italian bread.
When you want a different way of cooking baby potatoes, give this recipe a try.
Buttercrisp Baby Potatoes
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
450g(l lb) new/baby potatoes
55g(2 oz) butter (¼ cup, or ½ stick), OR
coarse salt, for sprinkling
You will need a large lidded sauté pan.
Scrub or scrape the potatoes. Cut larger ones in half, as you do want the size to be small.
Heat the butter or oil in the pan and, when hot, add the potatoes and shake the pan so they are well coated with the butter or oil.
Cover with the lid and let them cook over a low heat for about 30 minutes. Shake the pan occasionally to turn the potatoes. When cooked they will be crisp and golden brown on the outside and tender inside.