- 6 firm, small, blood oranges with thin skin
- 1.200 grams (6 cups) granulated sugar
Bring a stainless-steel pot of water to a boil. (It should be large enough to hold the oranges submerged.)
Wash and dry the blood oranges, and channel from stem to navel at 1/2-inch intervals, removing strips of peel while leaving the pith intact, you need a good, sharp channeler.
Place the oranges and their long, fat threads of channeled peel into the boiling water, and reduce to a simmer. Cover the oranges with a lid one size too small for the pot, to keep them submerged. Let them blanch for about 25 minutes to remove the harshest edge of their bitter nature. They should swell and soften.
As the blood oranges boil, in a second pot – the same size as the first combine the sugar with 6 cups water; bring the sugar water to a boil over medium-high, stirring until the sugar has dissolved, then allow to gently boil, and reduce for 10 minutes, uncovered. You want some water to evaporate and for the syrup to take on a little body.
Remove the oranges and zest from the simmering water with a slotted spoon, and place in the sugar syrup pot, reduce heat to a very slow, lethargic simmer. Cover oranges with a parchment circle cut slightly larger than the circumference of the pot (by 1 inch is enough), then place the too-small lid on top of the parchment on top of the oranges, to keep them fully submerged (and sealed under the parchment) in the simmering syrup.
Cook the blood oranges in the syrup for about 45 minutes, checking on them frequently to keep the temperature quite slow and stable, until they take on a high gloss and appear vaguely translucent and jewel-like.
Cool the blood oranges at room temperature until no longer warm to the touch, at least 4 hours, then refrigerate the blood oranges in their syrup until thoroughly chilled, for a full 24 hours before serving. This kind of “cures” them. They get even better after 48 hours. They will keep in the fridge for 1 month as long as they are submerged in that syrup.