Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Blood Orange and White Grapefruit Marmalade

I was reading the March 2010 issue of Martha Stewart Living (which my Brother and his Fiancee, Kendra just bought a year subscription for me for my birthday!! Thanks Guys!) and they had a few ideas on canning and preserving so I tried two recipes (the second one will be in an upcomming blog post!). The first of which was a blood orange and white grapefruit marmalade. The origional recipe called for blood oranges and pummelos, but those are out of season - and it wouldn't be me if I didn't tweak the recipe to suit my own tastes, right?

Organic Blood Oranges (I used 3 large and 4 small because they were on sale at City Market)
Organic White Grapefruit (I used 1 1/2 large ones)
1 Meyer lemon
Sugar (amt to be determined later in recipe)
6 cups water
Organic Clover Honey (optional)

  • remove zest from oranges and grapefruit. I did this by quartering the fruit peeling meat away from peel and using a paring knife to eliminate the white pith (which tastes bitter).
  • Cut fruit meat into chunks and place in large stock pot. Next slice zest into 1/3" chunks. (no need to be precise, I kind of cut mine into small ribbons) Place into stock pot.
  • Deseed, quarter, and thinly slice lemon (with or witout pith, I left mine on for a touch of bitterness to balance out the sweet) put into pot. Add Water.
  • Bring fruit, peels, and water to a boil stock pot Cook for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, cover, and let cool. Refrigerate for 8 hours (or up to 1 day).
  • Throw a small plate in the freezer, you'll use this to test the consistency of the marmalade later on.
  • Uncover citrus mixture, and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook until thickest peel is tender. (The original recipe says 20 minutes, mine took a little longer - just use your own judgement)
  • Measure mixture taking notes of how many cups you have, and return to pot. For each cup of mixture, add 3/4 cup sugar. I had 7 cups of mixture and added 6 x 3/4cups of sugar and 1x 3/4cup of organic clover honey which gave my marmalade an awesome flowery aroma and taste, I would recommend.
  • Bring mixture to a boil, stirring often. Cook until mixture registers 220 degrees to 222 degrees on a candy thermometer, mine took about 40 minutes. Make sure the mixture does not get too hot or else the sugar will scorch and then all that work would have been for nothing.
  • Test marmalade on frozen plate, see details below. Transfer marmalade to airtight containers, I used mason jars, and let cool at room temperature. Refrigerate overnight before serving. (Marmalade will keep, covered and refrigerated, for up to 1 month.)
Plate Test
To test for doneness of marmalade: Drop a spoonful on frozen plate. If marmalade has a slight film when pushed with a finger, it's done. If it spreads out and thins immediately, continue cooking, and test again after a few minutes.

And there you go! I made tags with some printed cardstock and rubber stamps. The handwrote the name of the marmalade and the date it was packaged, then tied it to the jar with jute rope. I gave them out as fun, unique presents for friends and family- plus, I kept a little for myself   :) 

Marmalade is great if used as a spread on toast or date nut bread (which I gave a stab at making and will follow up with a blog post!), as a marinade for chicken, or used as filling between two sugar cookies or gingersnaps.

Make something fabulous!

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