October 30th, 2010


Orange marmalade

Remember how I bitched about having too many oranges and no idea how to use them?

We have been running low on jam (apricot), so I thought I might make orange marmalade and reuse some of the old jam jars we've accummulated. Just sterlise them before pouring in your jam mixture to keep them well.

I have a love for marmalade. Its distinct bitter-sweet flavour is such a refreshing zing, it makes a perfect little wake-up call on morning toast. Yet we don't buy it much from the supermarket. The issue I have with many commercially available marmalades are they either too sweet or they taste like something out of a laboratory.

Nothing better than homemade jam, is there? This recipe uses the natural pectin in the oranges to set the marmalade, so no need for powders or special sugar mixes.

Makes 620gms of marmalade

  • 4 medium oranges (1kg)
  • 600gm sugar
  • 4 cloves
  • 3 cups of water
  • Juice of 1 lemon

  1. Peel the oranges carefully with a vegetable peeler, trying to keep peels in one piece. Then cut about half of the peels into thin strips (julienne) and set aside.

  2. Peel as much of the pith as possible and set aside. Cut the oranges half crosswise, remove the seeds and set aside too.

  3. Use a clean handkerchief or muslin cloth/bag, wrap the seeds, pith, the uncut peels and cloves together tightly.

  4. Put oranges, peel strips, the parcel of pith+seeds+cloves, lemon juice, sugar, water into a large pot. Stir constantly over high heat until sugar is dissolved. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to medium and let it bubble away for about 45 mins, stir occasionally until jell point is reached.

  5. To test for jell point, put a saucer in the freezer for about 5mins. Take it out and add a dollop of jam onto saucer. Put in back in the freezer for 1min. Remove and push the surface of the jam. The jam is ready if the surface wrinkles. If not, boil the mixture for another 10 minutes and test again.

  6. Once ready, remove the parcel and discard the contents. If there are any large orange pulp chunks that haven't disintegrated, either break them up with a fork or remove and discard. Pour the marmalade into hot sterilised jars. Seal when the jars are cool enough to handle.