Oranges with Caramel Syrup

A simple caramelized sugar syrup can elevate fresh oranges to a memorable finale for almost any meal. This variation on a classic Neapolitan dessert, the orange liqueur adds an extra dimension to this dessert, although it will still be delicious without it. This recipe can be easily doubled or quadrupled as the oranges will intensify in flavor over a week or two in the refrigerator. Experiment by adding spices such as a cinnamon stick, nutmeg or a few black peppercorns to the syrup, or perhaps add an herb such as a sprig of fresh rosemary.

4 navel oranges
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier, or other orange liqueur
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup water

1 Peel the oranges. Cut crosswise into rounds, remove any seeds, and cut the rounds in half. Arrange the oranges in a deep platter. Drizzle with the Grand Marnier. Cover and set aside.
2 In a small heavy saucepan, combine the sugar and 1/4 cup of the water. Stir over medium-high heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and boil without stirring 6 to 8 minutes, until the bubbles get larger and the syrup is golden around edges.
3 Shake the pan gently to blend the colors and continue cooking the syrup until it is the color of weak iced tea. Immediately remove from heat and let cool 6 minutes.
4 Return the pan to medium heat and stir in the remaining 1/4 cup water until blended and liquidy. Remove from the heat. Gently pour the syrup over the oranges. Cover and refrigerate until chilled.

Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 137 calories, 0.1g total fat (0g saturated), 0mg cholesterol, 3.4g dietary fiber, 33g carbohydrate, 1g protein, 2mg sodium.