Are candied lemon peels bitter?

Making pfeffernüsse. Couldn't find candied lemon peels in store so decided to make own. I've boiled them 4x already and when I bite into a peel they are still bitter. Not quite at first but after the lemony taste wears away. Is this normal? Can I make the pfeffernüsse with them?

Jessica K


AntoniaJames December 12, 2016
Also, make sure that you scrape away all of the soft white pith just below the yellow skin. That's what makes it bitter. A touch of bitterness is nice, as noted below. Also, I've found it works best to blanch four times, refreshing the water each time, before simmering in syrup for 30 - 40 minutes. Then I dry the peels on a rack until almost dry, and roll in sugar. The granulated sugar counters the bitterness, too. ;o)
Maedl December 12, 2016
A little bitterness may remain and is not bad. It is more interesting than simply sweet. However, if you are getting frustrated, just use grated fresh peel in place of the candied peel. Pfeffernüsse are very forgiving.
Susan W. December 10, 2016
Are you toasting them before the sugar process? If so, lemon peels will be lemony with some bitterness. You need to be careful to avoid the white pith when peeling. The pitch is very bitter. I've never boiled them more than twice. I'd worry they would fall apart.

This is the technique and recipe I use:
Susan W. December 10, 2016
That should read "are you tasting them before the sugar process".
pierino December 10, 2016
Generally speaking, more sweet than bitter.
Recommended by Food52