This has absolutley nothing whatsoever to do with wool or felt but it’s something I do around this time every single year because seville oranges are only available in January. Sitting down at my laptop just after getting a huge pan of chopped up oranges on to cook, I notice that Facebook has reminded me that I posted a picture of my marmalade jars on this very day last year, so I really must be boringly consistent in my habits.
There is nothing like a crisp and sunny January morning, the house slowly filling with aromatic orange vapours, Classic FM on the radio and some soft fleece to spin while the orange peel simmers.
So many marmalade recipes are terribly complicated so I’m going to share my very easy recipe which I’ve used for about 20 years. Seville oranges are the best as they are more tart than an eating orange & have a wonderful flavour.
1.4 kg Seville oranges
3 litres water
2 large lemons
2.3 kg sugar
Wash the fruit in warm water, cut in half and squeeze out the juice. Put the juice into your big preserving pan. Remove all internal skins and remaining pips from the orange halves and place these in a smaller saucepan.
Place the cleaned half orange & lemon peels and into a food processor ( about 3 batches in total) and chop finely. Add these to your large pan with the juice.
Add 2 litres of water to your large pan and the rest to the small pan.
Bring to the boil and then turn right down to slowly simmer until the large pan volume is reduced by a half. This usually takes about an hour. Don’t be tempted to rush it as the oranges need this time to soften.
Meanwhile the pips and skins will be cooking on their own in the smaller saucepan. Make sure they don’t boil dry by topping up the water. After about 30 minutes strain the contents through a sieve over the larger pan to add the liquid to the peel. The pectin from the pips will now have come out and you can discard the pith and pips.
Once the peel is reduced by a half slowly stir in the sugar and then bring to the boil again. Boil hard until setting point is reached. Test for this by placing a teaspoon of marmalade onto a cold plate. Once cool, if it wrinkles when you push with a finger then it’s ready.
Allow to cool for about 15 minutes and pour into clean warmed jars.
This little lot came from 3kg of oranges last January!