December 1, then the Christmas month is officially opened, therefore it is time to create some Christmas garnish for the coming Christmas GT´s.
Dehydrated citrus wheels.
The processing is very simple and do not demand special kitchen skills so just threw yourself into it. For optimizing your process and not at least save you from all the rookie mistakes then we have tested and compared the following three methods
- Hot air oven with a relative high temperature of 110°C (app. 2-2¼ h)
- Hot air oven with a low temperature of 65°C (app. 3-3½ h)
- Microwave oven using the defrosting mode (app. 1¾- 2h)
All methods are usable, but it is absolutely easiest to control the drying process by using method #2 due to the low temperature, both method #1, and especially #3 can be rough for the visual output of the process. If the citrus fruits are over-dehydrated, then the wheels very quickly become burned/brown spotted. Several of our wheels were discarded from these batches due to brown spots and none from the batch using method #2.
All types of citrus fruits can be dehydrated. Gin Can Do dehydrated lemon, lime, pink grapefruit, orange and clementine.
Wash the fruits carefully – preferable use organic fruits.
Slice the fruits into slices with a wide blade knife to ensure uniform thickness of each slice. Thicker outer and/or inner peel ease the slicing process, with other words lemons are very easy, opposite the climentine fruits that can be difficult to slice uniformly. Our wheels were app. ½ – ¾ cm. Thinner slices will of course reduce the drying time and thicker vice versa. A mandolin slicer could properly successful be used and create some very uniform slices. Both sides of our citrus wheels were pre-drying in app. 5min on an absorbent paper towel (reduce the drying time in the oven).
Optinal A: If you want to add a candied/shinny effect to the wheels and of course sweetness to your GT´s then you can coat both side of the slices generously with icing sugar.
Optional B: Extra Christmas feeling can be included by adding some cloves into the peel of the wheels
Place the citrus wheels directly onto a wire rack.
Place the wired rack in the lower part of the oven. Start up the oven according to the above listed process parameters depending of the chosen method, but please be aware of the possible time variation between different ovens.
Every ½ – 1 hour then flip the wheels until the wheels are completely dehydrated. Please be aware, that the wheels can be sticky even though they are done.
Before the citrus wheel are packed in an airtight container then include a cooling period of app. ¼ – ½ hour.
The most important part of the processing is the process control 😊. The most exact way to control your dehydrated citrus wheels is to mix your favorite GT and then add 1-2 different citrus wheels to the glass.
Visual inspect the citrus wheel in the glass and take sip or two of the gin if your satisfied with the GT taste then the citrus wheels pass the quality control test. If not re-test with another GT!
Our process control was performed with our new favorite classic London Dry Gin from London Gin Lab. Fever-Three Premium Indian tonic water was used for the GT.