Traditionally, marmalade is made with the intensely zesty, bitter oranges from Seville, which are in season in a brief window from mid-December to mid-February. When buying, make sure the skin feels oily – a fingernail dragged along the skin should burst the surface, releasing an orange zest aroma. The rules, however – as with jam-making – remain the same, so feel free to experiment with whatever kind of citrus fruit marmalade you like.
How to make the perfect marmalade
How do you make marmalade sweet?
If you’ve ever bitten on seville orange peel, you’ll know how intensely bitter it is. The first boil in this process removes that excess bitterness. It also extracts pectin from the fruit and then concentrates it as the water reduces.
How do you get the right marmalade consistency?
Pectin is naturally found in the cell walls of plants and fruits, and has been used as a thickening agent for centuries. A high concentration of it is found in the piths and pips of citrus fruits, which is why it’s traditional to boil the pips wrapped in muslin, before squeezing out as much of the pectin as possible.
What type of sugar should you use to make marmalade?
The sugar draws the water away from the pectin, forcing the pectin strands to begin to knit together. After a rapid boil the sugar thickens and the pectin reforms into a gel consistency.
Combining two kinds of sugar means that the high levels of pectin in the preserving sugar are complemented with a hint of caramel sweetness from the golden caster sugar.
How do you sterilise a jar for marmalade?
Once fruit has been turned into marmalade and put into a jar, it will keep, sealed, for up to six months. However, this is only the case if the jars are completely sterile. If any bacteria gets into the jar, it will shorten the marmalade’s lifespan considerably. To sterilise the jars, wash them thoroughly in hot, soapy water, rinse well, then put in an oven at 120C/fan 100C/gas ½ for 10-15 minutes until piping hot.
- Seville oranges 1kg
- lemons 3
- jam sugar 1.5kg
*This recipe is gluten free according to industry standards
Check out more delicious marmalade recipes
- Kcals 32
- Carbs 7.9g
- Sugars 7.9g
- Fibre 0.1g