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Fresh Oranges with Caramel & Ginger

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Serves four to six.

If you serve this pretty dessert soon after assembling it, you'll get bits of crunchy caramel with the orange slices. If you let it sit for a couple of hours, the caramel will dissolve and blend with the orange juices to make a toasty syrup. Both ways are very appealing.

  • 5 seedless oranges, such as navel, including some blood oranges if possible
  • 2 Tbs. chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 8 to 10 mint leaves, very thinly sliced

Finely grate the zest (use a rasp-style grater if you have one) from one of the oranges to get 2 tsp. zest. Cut the tops and bottoms off each orange, being sure to cut into some of the flesh; reserve th tops and bottoms. Cut the peel off the sides, exposing the flesh by cutting under the pithy membrane. Discard the peels cut from the sides. Cut each orange in half vertically, trim out the pithy core, and then slice each piece crosswise into 1/4-inch half moons. Arrange the slices on a large, shallow serving dish or deep platter.

Combine the zest and crystallized ginger on a cutting board and chop them together until they're well mixed. Scatter the ginger and zest evenly over the oranges.

Put 2 Tbs. water in a small, heavy saucepan and pour the sugar on top. Bring to a boil over high heat, lower the heat to medium high, and boil without stirring until the syrup has turned a deep medium brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Watch the pan carefully during the last few minutes, as the caramel goes quickly from brown to burnt. Using a heavy pot holder to hold the pan, immediately drizzle the caramel over the oranges, getting a bit of caramel on each slice. Scatter the mint over the oranges. Squeeze the juice from the reserved ends of the oranges over all.

Fine Cooking Annual Cookbook
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This recipe appears in the Fine Cooking Annual, a year's worth of delicious recipes from Fine Cooking magazine, in a gorgeous hardcover cookbook.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on six servings; Calories (kcal): 110; Fat (g): fat g 0; Fat Calories (kcal): 0; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 0; Protein (g): protein g 1; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 0; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 26; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 0; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 0; Fiber (g): fiber g 3;

Photo: Scott Phillips

This is definitively a WOO-WAAH when receiving guests! A culinary highlight of contrast of savors and textures comparable to a Rembrandt's Clair-obscure in the visual field. While your teeth are working their way through hard and tough, crunchy and nutty caramel, your tongue is being overwhelmed by the freshness and juiciness of the cool oranges. The marriage between both provokes a mouthwatering sensation of ... "more, I want more of this!"

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