Hubby and I made marmalade with Seville oranges on Sunday.
You may think that Seville oranges are out of season now, and you would be right, but realising I wouldn't have time when they were in season and having ordered a batch including a couple of lemons from Riverford I decided to freeze the fruit until I had the time.
I used the recipe from Riverford for quantities, but used a recipe from school days for the method.
Not having a pressure cooker we cut the fruit in quarters and simmered in the water for half an hour instead of 10 minutes. Hubby carefully extracted most of the pips. However, once the fruit was cooked we separated the pulp and remaining few pips from the rind and cut the rind into fine slices. Hubby’s were a bit shorter and chunkier than mine.
Then it was time to go and see mother-in-law and do some shopping. After that we did a spot of gardening. Then (after washing our hands well) we put all the pips and pulp in a large muslin cloth, which I'd bought a while back, and tied the ends to make a bag, simmered the contents for a half an hour in the fluid left over from the morning. We then removed the muslin bag and squeezed as much juice as we could out of the bag. Hubby later found somewhere to hang it up and let more juice drip out.
Next we added the sliced peel and sugar so that our saucepan was very full. You don’t want a saucepan full of sugar solution to boil, so we ladled some into another large saucepan so that both were half full and could bubble away happily without too much spillage.
I used Waitrose Fairtrade sugar, which came in paper bags.
When I thought the marmalade was nearly done hubby tipped the marmalade back into one saucepan and mixed it together well.
From school days I knew to have a saucer or two in the fridge, so that I could put a few drops of marmalade on one when I thought it might be ready. At that stage you pop the saucer back in the fridge for just a few minutes, then touch it to see if it has set and wrinkles when you push it.
We added a knob of butter at the end to disperse the froth. Then we poured it into clean jars we’d sterilised in the oven and sealed each jar with a wax disc before covering with a plastic film lid. I'd been saving the jars for a couple of years, but had to buy the jam pot coverings on Sunday as I couldn't find any where I expected them to be.
It tasted good on the spoon and the next morning we could see it had set. So, it seems it's all right to leave it half way through. The crucial bit is cooking it for just the right time. We just need to finish our last jar of bought marmalade and then we can try it.