Home Cooking Column - By Barbara Collins

Marmalade oranges are in season, so why not while away a few hours while the weather is bad outside and make something comforting, zingy and utterly yummy. Trust me, this is WAY better than the stuff you can buy in the shops. The sense of satisfaction you’ll get when you label up the jars is hard to beat. Laying down stores of preserves goes back to the cave, I’m sure. If you get the jammy/marmaladey bug, make sure to save your jars all year for gluts of fruit. I get about four jars out of this amount of ingredients.

Iingredients

6-8 small oranges, weighing about 550g
juice of 1 lemon
1.4 litres water
1.1 kg granulated sugar

Method

To sterilize jam jars, wash them thoroughly in hot, soapy water. Dry and then leave in a warm oven for half an hour. Allow to cool before using and make sure to lift them out with tongs to avoid dirtying them again.

Slice the oranges in half. Using a metal spoon, scoop out the flesh over a bowl to collect any juice, leaving the pith behind. Reserve the shells.

Put the flesh, juice and pips in a food processor and blend until smooth. Push the purée through a sieve into a preserving pan or large heavy-based saucepan.

Now scoop out as much of the pith from the shells as possible. Slice the rind into very thin matchstick strips and add these to the sieved flesh in the pan.

Pour in the lemon juice and water. Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the rind is very soft and the mixture has reduced by half.

Over a low heat, add the sugar and stir until it has dissolved. Boil for about 10 minutes, skimming off any froth on the surface.

After 10 minutes, spoon a little of the marmalade onto a cold plate and place in the fridge. If it sets to a jelly the marmalade is cooked. If necessary, cook for a further 5-10 minutes and test again.

Allow the marmalade to cool slightly, then pour into the sterilized jars.

Tip

Why not make a sponge pudding with this instead of golden syrup?

Contact Barbara @thegoodchinaset or on [email protected]

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