What’s the best time to make your own orange marmalade?  When the oranges are ripe, of course.  And that would be right about now—winter to mid-spring.  The market has oranges piled high—sweet smelling and perfectly ripe.  This recipe is great if you want a small batch of marmalade to keep in the fridge—no canning required, because it won’t last long.  It’s a little fussy and time consuming—but most of the time is in the cooking.  Fresh homemade marmalade—worth the time!!  Hang out in the kitchen to keep an eye on it—boiled-over preserves are really a mess!

  • 2 good sized oranges, with beautiful bright orange skin
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ lemon, juiced

Using a sharp vegetable peeler  remove the thin layer of orange rind from the oranges, being careful not to remove the bitter white pith.  Cut the oranges in half crosswise, and remove orange segments, slicing any large pieces, and reserve.  Cut out the membranes still remaining inside the orange pith and save the membranes, juice and any seeds. Take the now sad-looking white pith orange halves and squeeze out any remaining juice and reserve.  Discard white pith.    

Cut the thin orange rind pieces into slices or random cuts for your marmalade.  Put the pieces in 2 cups of boiling water and boil slowly, adding more water if needed, for 20-30 minutes—until rind pieces have softened.  In a large sauce pan, combine 2 cups water, the sugar, lemon juice, reserved orange segments and juice, and the drained, softened rinds.  Tie up the orange membranes and any seeds in a thin layer of cheesecloth and add to pot—this is your pectin source.

Boil at high heat until sugar has dissolved.  Lower heat to simmer—continue cooking, stirring occasionally, for about 40 minutes.  It should look and feel syrupy by then.  Continue simmering.  Using meat or candy thermometer, start checking marmalade every 5 minutes—when it reaches 220’, keep simmering for 2 more minutes.  Skim off any foam, discard cheesecloth packet, and pour into clean glass jars– cool to room temperature.  Put on lids and refrigerate—it will firm up more as it cools.  Store in fridge.

The Kitchen Hive

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