these are not my mother's orange slices.
my mother loves orange slices. those sickeningly sweet, coated in sugar, chewy candies that look like cartoon orange slices. not every time, but most times, we went to the grocery store, my mom would buy a small bag of these. and she always opened them as soon as she got in the car, passing the bag around to my sister and i until our teeth couldn't take it. then they would end up closed with a clothes pin, stashed in the candy cupboard at home. i don't know what it was about those things, but mom loved them.
mom's orange slices are sickeningly sweet and stick to your teeth chewy. while these peach candies are definitely sweet - it is candy after all - it isn't sickening. and you don't have to worry about fillings falling out or getting them stuck in your braces (which i always did with those darn orange slices) since these are nice and chewy without being sticky. they're a nice bite of sweet, concentrated peach flavor. a great afternoon pick me up.
got some end of the summer peaches? or like me - have one lonely last jar of peaches left that you canned last year and need to make room for this year's crop? this is it. well, let's be honest, this or two of my other favorites - jam and ice cream.
adapted from food wishes
40 minutes, plus cooling & cutting time, makes 18 one inch square candies
1 pound ripe peaches, pitted, peeled, and cut into chunks
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
3 ounces liquid pectin
2 cups sugar
additional sugar for cutting the candy
- in a blender or food processor, puree the peaches and lime juice until smooth.
- add the peach puree and 1/2 cup of sugar to a deep sauce pan. bring to a boil and boil lightly while stirring frequently for about fifteen minutes, until thick.
- line an 8x8 or 9x9 pan with plastic wrap and set aside.
- add the remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar and the liquid pectin. stirring constantly, heat the mixture to 200F and cook at 200F for an additional 10 to 15 minutes. be sure to stir constantly and if the bottom starts to scorch or burn, lower the heat a bit and stir faster. the mixture will be really thick when ready.
- pour the peach mixture into the plastic wrap lined pan. let cool completely, cover with plastic wrap, and let sit a couple hours or overnight until set.
- when you're ready to cut the candy, coat the top with granulated sugar (it's really sticky). turn the candy out of the pan and unpeel from the plastic wrap. cover the new top (which was the bottom in the pan) with granulated sugar. use a chef's knife to cut into whatever shapes and sizes you want. toss the finished candy pieces with sugar to coat. store in the refrigerator.