Candied Clementines with Ricotta--Your Patience Will Be Rewarded

I have had this recipe for a few years. I tore it out from a magazine, but unfortunately there is no name of the publisher, so I cannot give credit to anyone. I suspect that it comes from a Mediterranean tradition as the recipe calls for ricotta and some candied fruits. I have been planning to make this dessert for a long time, but only having this blog mobilized me to do it. Citrus fruits are now at season's peak and it is a good time to share some recipes for them.

Last week I bought a box of beautiful Spanish clementines, which prompted me finally to try this recipe. I like orange peel and often add it to many cakes and desserts, but I could not imagine eating such a generous amount of it. The whole fruits are preserved in sugar, then they are peeled off and stuffed with cheese filling. But do not expect to enjoy this dessert right away.

This is a very easy recipe, but it demands quite a bit of patience, because it takes a few minutes of your time for four to five days to prepare this dessert. Moreover, it tastes even better when it stays in a refrigerator for at least one night. Actually, it could stay there for at least one week and probably even longer, but I had no chance to check this, as at my home it did not last for too long.

It is a great dessert but if you are one of those people who dig out candied fruits from cakes and throw them out this dessert is definitely not for you.

I modified the original recipe somewhat. I used clementines instead of oranges, but I would think that minneolas would work even better. The original recipe called for the ricotta cheese only but I also added some leftover mascarpone to it and a tablespoon of Cointreau for an extra twist.

Candied Clementines with Ricotta


6-8 clementines, or 4 oranges,

1 and 2/3 cup sugar,

1 cup fresh ricotta,

1/2 cup mascarpone,

3/4 cup sugar,

1/3 cup chopped candied fruits (whatever you like) I used golden raisins and dried apricots,

1/3 cup chopped roasted pistachio nuts,

1 tbsp Cointreau liqueur,

1 tsp vanilla extract.


1. Wash the clementines thoroughly and, using a sharp knife, cut openings in the peel.

2. Place clementines in a pot, cover with cold water, bring to boil and strain afterwards.

3. Boil 1 cup of water with 1/3 cup of sugar for about 2 minutes. Turn the heat off and place clementines in this syrup. Set aside for 24 h.

4. Take the clementines out of the syrup, add another 1/3 cup of sugar, and bring to boil. Turn the heat off and add back the clementines. Set aside for another 24 h.

5. Repeat this procedure on the third and fourth day.

6. On the fifth day remove clementines from the syrup, place them on a cookie rack and let them dry for 4 hours.

7. Mix ricotta with mascarpone (if you use only ricotta, you will need 1 and 1/2 cup of it) and sugar. Add liqueur, vanilla extract, dried fruits, and pistachios. Mix everything gently.

8. Remove upper parts of clementines and carefully, remove the fruit pulp. Fill up the empty shells with the ricotta mixture. Let them chill overnight in a refrigerator. Decorate with pistachios and serve.

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