06 May 2011

Marmalade

I made a glorious grapefruit/meyer lemon marmalade a couple of months ago - out of free fruit. The grapefruit had been a Christmas gift to my father, and I picked the lemons in a friend's backyard in California. I love marmalade. It suits my ornery self.

The basic technique (and canning instructions) came from the Times, which had adapted the recipe from June Taylor. Head over to the Times site to read up on the technique in comprehensive detail. But basically, you want to separate the fruit into three parts: flesh & juice, outer rind (peel), white pith & membranes. You remove the peel with a vegetable peeler and sliver it. You filet out the flesh, working over a bowl so you capture the juice. And then you tie the pith and membranes up in cheesecloth so that you can boil and remove them - they release pectin, which you want for thickening.

Instead of weighing the fruit, I eyeballed it before I started cutting it up. Two grapefruit and five small Meyer lemons got me 3 cups of peel/flesh/juice. 3 cups of fruit then needs 3 cups of water and 3 cups of sugar. (Easy ratio, huh? Adjust quantities as necessary.) You boil the fruit and water until the the peel is tender, then add the sugar and boil until it's done. I ended up with three (sealed) pints and a half a cup left over.

It's wonderful.

And it's going to be gone way too soon the way I'm slathering it on my toast every morning.

4 comments:

soher529 said...

What an absolutely perfect way to describe why I love marmalade. Oh, and the making your own part - truly great. Made some from Finger Limes (http://www.fingerlime.com/) because we got a shipment of about 5 lbs and no one had ever heard of them and I love a challange. I had to add pectin because they are so tiny and don't give off much of anything except a delicious taste.

Janet said...

are you a sagitarrius?

Bee said...

The older I get, the more I love marmalade.

I had a marmalade disaster this year. I bought my Seville oranges, but then I never had time to cut them up. They sat and sat on the counter. Then when I finally did cut them up, it was late at night . . . so I left them for about 48 hours. Moral of the story? My marmalade never "set." Old fruit must lose its pectin.
Next year maybe I'll just skip the Seville season (so brief, anyway) and try this recipe.

mayberry said...

Sounds wonderful! Eons ago, my mother and grandmother would make some kind of orange marmalade. I wish I'd been smart enough to eat it at the time.