Candied Meyer Lemon Zest Curls
These curls provide decoration for Meyer Lemon Coconut Cake.
- Yield: Makes about 4 cups
Source: Martha Stewart Weddings, 2007
- 12 large Meyer lemons
- 2 cups water
- 4 cups sugar, plus more for decorating
Fill a large bowl with cold water. Using a sharp vegetable peeler, remove zest from each lemon in one continuous strip, working your way around the lemon from one end to the other in a spiral. Place peels in the cold water, and soak for 1 hour (this will make the pith easier to remove). Using a very sharp knife, cut pith from lemon peels. Cut zest into long, thin strips (you can cut the spiral of peel in half or into thirds to make it easier to work with if needed).
Place zest strips in a large saucepan, and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil. Strain, reserving zest. Repeat process (boiling and straining) two more times.
Return zest to saucepan. Pour 2 cups water and the sugar over zest. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until sugar has dissolved. Reduce heat, and simmer until zest is almost translucent, 10 to 15 minutes. Strain, gently shaking zest to remove as much syrup as possible, and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. (Zest will be very sticky.)
Fill a bowl with sugar. Toss zest in sugar to coat, then shake off excess. Place on a wire rack to dry, about 5 minutes, keeping zest curled so it dries in that position. Shake off any remaining excess sugar, and continue to dry on rack until hardened, about 30 minutes more.