Tag Archives: jam jelly

2013~ A Year in Review

2013 was a busy year. I didn’t blog much, but I did get a lot done.

I have a daughter that is now a senior in high school and a son that left elementary to move up to the big leagues of middle school. Hubby got (and rejected) two job offers. One was definitely not a better job. The other would have been a pay raise but would have caused a ridiculous amount of stress for Mr. Hippie. Mr. Hippie’s ulcerative colitis doesn’t do well with stress, so although I still pine for the extra income that would make our fiscal lives easier, I am grateful for his time with our family and for his health.

Will 2014 be The Year of My Blog? I don’t know the future, but I hear that the road to Hell is paved with good intentions. Regardless of what 2014 brings, I’m leaving 2013 with a bang!

The top posts always surprise me a little, but it helps me understand what people actually want to read! Apparently the movement toward healthier, greener cleaning hasn’t lost steam and people still love animals!

Coming in at number one:

Vinegar and oil(s)Homemade Fabric Softener

housing for two rabbits

Home to our breeding pair.

Building a Rabbit Hutch

Finished loaf cooled, sliced and ready to eat.

Freshly baked bread in five minutes?

Crusty Round Loaves of Homemade Bread

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Soap after the mold has been removed.

How I Made Homemade Soap (and Didn’t Screw it up)

Some of the finished treats.

Homemade Dog Biscuits

Supplies needed to make your own.

Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

Sink Scrub

Homemade Scouring Powder

Chicken Tractor

Chicken Run

Pinot Jelly

Pinot Noir Jam

Thanks for sticking around to hear what I had to say even when I didn’t have much to talk about!

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Rhubarb Two Ways or Canning, Continued.

There are few things that I can’t live without. My KitchenAid Mixer probably tops the list. Coming a close second would have to be my freezers. Yes, I said freezer(s), plural. Of course I have the small freezer that is part of my refrigerator, but I also have a small chest freezer. And a larger, stand-up freezer. Both are mostly full most of the time. Of course, the contents vary from day-to-day and season to season, but I keep them pretty loaded. When things come into season, I try to can as much as possible. Sometimes, I don’t have time to can everything I want before it will spoil, so I freeze the excess until I have time to deal with it. I do that with tomatoes. A lot.

Last year I had an abundance of rhubarb.  I made some delicious Rhubeenas and still had a bunch left over so I chopped it up and threw it into the freezer. With summer’s bounty (and strawberry season) nearly upon us, it’s time to clear some space in the freezers.

 In the first Can Jam, I used asparagus as the May ingredient, but Rhubarb was also an option. Among the rhubarb recipes was a recipe for Rhubarb and Cinnamon Jam from Seasonal Menus. I love cinnamon and have a jar of extra-long cinnamon sticks, so I thought I’d give it a go:

Rhubarb the First Way

  • 2lbs. sliced rhubarb
  • 2 lbs. sugar
  • 3 extra-long cinnamon sticks, broken in half
  • 2 T. lemon juice

Combine rhubarb and sugar in a nonmetallic bowl.
Let macerate overnight in the refrigerator.
Set up canner and boiling water bath; wash and sterilize jars and lids.
Transfer rhubarb mixture to a saucepan.
Add cinnamon and lemon juice.
Heat over medium heat, stirring often until sugar is completely dissolved.
Bring to a boil.
Boil until jam sets.
Remove cinnamon stick pieces, add one to each jar and ladle jam into hot jars.
Process in water bath for 15 minutes.

The cinnamon flavor wasn’t very intense, but I know from experience with my Chai-Spiced Apple Rings that the cinnamon flavor blooms as the jars age. I expect that even the color will turn warmer with time. This recipe made almost exactly five 1/2 pint jars.

For a printable version, click here: Rhubarb Cinnamon Jam Printable Recipe

Rhubarb the Second Way doesn’t help fulfill my Can Jam goals, but it does help me complete my goal to can enough jams/jellies to get us through the year, and it helps me meet my food storage goal. I snagged this recipe from Tigress but made some modifications. First, she used lavender sprigs; I opted for dried blossoms. They looked quite lovely after their overnight in the fridge, but I know from my soap-making experience that the magenta-purple cooks away. She also includes an extra step: “pass (rhubarb) mixture through a strainer and pour collected juice into a non-reactive pan. add honey and bring to a boil. skim any foam that collects on top and continue cooking until 221 F on a candy thermometer.” Afterwards she returns the solids to the boiled juices and re-boils the whole mess. I’m not sure of the point, but her jam was lovely. I myself hate the mess straining creates and don’t do it unless absolutely necessary. Mine tastes delish and has about the same look as hers, so I don’t think it is an essential step.

Rhubarb The Second Way (Honey Lavender Rhubarb Jam)

2 pounds sliced rhubarb
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 ounces light honey
3 T. lemon juice
3 tsp. dried lavender blossoms

1. Combine rhubarb, sugar, lemon juice and lavender blossoms in a nonmetallic bowl. Stir this mixture gently, cover with a plate and macerate in fridge overnight.

2. In the morning, prepare the canner and boiling water bath; wash and sterilize jars and lids. Turn heat down and leave jars in canner until ready to fill.

3. Pour rhubarb mixture into a non-reactive pan. Add honey and bring to a boil.  Continue cooking until the jam is sufficiently set. Process in a hot water bath for 5 minutes.

yields approximately five 1/2 pint or two pint jars.

Again, if you prefer a printable version, click here: Honey Lavender Rhubarb Jam Printable Recipe

Not only did I clear up some space in the freezer, but I’m a quart-and-a-half closer to my jam and food storage goals!

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#53 (How Much Should You Can?)

As part of my 101 in 1001, I committed to completing a food storage plan. I actually sat down this winter and completed it! However, I did it the old fashioned way: with a pencil and a printed out copy. So, with canning season upon us, I decided to update the plan and bring it into the 21st century. After starting my canning for the season, I decided that it was time for a spreadsheet.

Drumroll please . . .

canning grid

Ok, so that is just a pdf version of the guide I printed from the internet. It’s a good thing though, because the link I had used to find the form before is no good anymore. If you want to print it out and do it the old-fashioned way, you can.

Here is a spreadsheet template for you to use to plan your own canning. I hope you find it useful.

My completed canning plan is a little adventurous. I think I’m going to be very busy this year. The Farmers’ Market is going strong, and I’ve already started my foraging and canning for the year, so I think I can do it, but it will be a lot of work. I’ll keep you posted.

 

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January Spice Rack Challenge: Rosemary 3 Ways

I found several different recipes that I wanted to try for this month’s Spice Rack Challenge but in addition to the Spice Rack Challenge, I still have my 101 in 1001 to think about.  So, I opted for recipes that would allow me to do double duty.  Cheating?  Maybe.  Efficient?  Definitely.   Besides, is it cheating if I do three posts with three different rosemary recipes?

Buffalo Stroganoff with Rosemary and Morels over Homemade Pasta

 

All three recipes turned out great.  First I made homemade pasta with rosemary, garlic and cracked pepper.  Several days later I used the pasta as a base for a Dark Days dinner of Buffalo Stroganoff with Rosemary and Morel Mushrooms.

Finished Rosemary-Lemon Marmalade

 I also made Rosemary/Meyer Lemon Marmalade.  I can honestly say it was the best marmalade I have ever made.  It was part of Tigress’ Can Jam round up last year and originally came from Prospect the Pantry.  I should share this marmalade, but I think I will end up hoarding it.

I also made Rosemary Lemon Muffins.  I intended to make Rosemary Lemon cupcakes, but I toyed with the recipe and ended up with more of a muffin.  I found three different recipes for lemon cupcakes and married them.  The result is a light but sweet rosemary/lemon corn muffin.  The flavor is excellent and I think I will make them again, but I will go back to the original recipes and tinker a little more first.

Rosemary/Lemon Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 stick real butter, melted
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cups corn flour (flour, not the grittier meal)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • zest from 2 lemons, divided
  • juice from 2 lemons
  • 1 T. fresh minced rosemary, divided
  • 1/3 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream melted butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time mixing thoroughly after each.  In a separate bowl combine flours, salt and baking soda.  Alternately add 1/3 of dry ingredients and 1/3 milk to wet ingredients mixing after each addition.  Add lemon juice, half the minced rosemary and half the zest; mix for one minute more.

Ready for the oven

 

Combine remaining zest, rosemary and 1/3 cup sugar.  Reserve.

Spoon batter into greased muffin tins.  Fill each tin half full. Sprinkle Rosemary-Lemon Sugar onto each muffin.  Bake 17-20 minutes.

Rosemary Lemon Muffin

I used jumbo muffin tins so mine needed to cook 23 minutes.

Feeling inspired?  Have a good rosemary recipe?  There’s still time for you to join the Spice Rack Challenge.  Hop on over to Mother’s Kitchen to sign up and post your recipe before Friday January 21st.

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Goodbye 2010, Hello 2011

The start of a new year is always a time for reflection on the past, and hope for the opportunities yet to come.  This year my family starts with some setbacks, but I am optimistic that the future will be bright despite the hurdles before us.

Although this blog was “born” in 2009, last year was my first full year blogging.  Sometimes I did a better job than others.  Posting regularly was a challenge for me at times but I hope to have a better go of it this year.  I’m not going to resolve to post daily or even weekly, but I think that posting more frequently is a good goal, as ambiguous as it is.  Challenges like the Spice Rack Challenge with its required monthly posts and the Dark Days Challenge with bi-monthly posts until April will help me stay motivated, but so will various things on my 101 in 1001 list (which I fully intend to complete).

But, as a farewell to the year gone by I present:

The Top Ten Posts of 2010

  1. Homemade Fabric Softener
  2. 28 Day Challenge Final Results
  3. June Can Jam~ Herbed Strawberry-Balsamic Jam
  4. Crusty Round Loaves of Homemade Bread
  5. How I Made Homemade Soap (and Didn’t Screw it up)
  6. Lavender’s Blue . . . (April Can Jam)
  7. How to Make Your Own Soap (Concluded)
  8. Homemade Laundry Detergent
  9. Everything but Apple Jacks?
  10. Can Jam Challenge Round Three ~ Jerked Onion

I was surprised that some of the posts made the list, but in general I wasn’t.  This blog is (mostly) about me getting back to slower times, cooking and cleaning in a way that is more sustainable.  So I shouldn’t be surprised that most of the posts on the list are in that vein: recipes for homemade food, instructions for preserving your harvests and recipes for cleaning in a more gentle manner. 

And, I was glad to see my three favorite canning recipes make the list!

Happy New Year,

Angela

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Pinot Noir Grape Jam

The four dresses I made for my sister and her "girls".

Pardon the angle; Gwen was the photographer.

Even though school started seven weeks ago, I’ve still been working my “summer job” selling croissants and produce for Nic and Jen Welty of 9 Bean Rows at the Farmers’ Market.  Between school, my sisters’ wedding (and sewing four bridesmaid’s dresses for said wedding), and Saturday mornings at the Market, I haven’t had much spare time for cooking, cleaning, canning or blogging. 

This afternoon when I got home from the Market I was supposed to go to a baby shower.  Or so I thought.  Once I arrived at the hostess’ house and found no cars in the drive I realized that the shower is actually tomorrow.  Graced with unplanned free time, I decided to clean out the refrigerator.  I pulled all the produce out of the drawers and made a ratatouille and a vegetable stock, started a crock of fermented dill beans and found some grapes from my CSA that I’d almost forgotten about. 

Dill Beans

Lacto-fermenting dill beans. (Ok, but not a huge success.)

 

My CSA share from 9 Bean Rows always has surprises in it: fall strawberries, whole chickens, unsprayed apples and even grapes.  I’m ashamed to admit how long these “found” grapes have been in the refrigerator. 

Picked through Pinot Noir grapes

One pound of wine-y goodness.

 The Pinot Noir grapes had to be picked through and I think I fed more to the chickens than I kept for the jam but I still had a pound. 

CSA grapes

Concord? grapes from my CSA

The other grapes are of an unknown variety, but I think they may be Concords.  They haven’t been waiting as long as the Pinot grapes and didn’t require any picking other than stem removal.

I decided a grape jam was in order so I present:

From the folks at Blackstar

My favorite local Pinot.

Arcturos Pinot Noir Jelly

  • 1 lb. each Pinot Noir grapes and Concord? Grapes (Wild grapes would probably work too.)
  • 1/4 cup Pinot Noir
  • 1 cup sugar

Wash and stem grapes.  Skin Concord? grapes reserving the skins. 

Squeezing the grapes over a bowl is a quick way to remove the skins.  This reminded me of those old-school “haunted houses” from my youth.  There was always a bowl of  “eyeballs” for us to reach into that was actually filled with peeled grapes.

Once the grapes have been skinned, combine grape skins, Pinot Noir and sugar in a non-reactive pan.  Bring to a boil to dissolve sugar and reduce heat.

In a separate  non-reactive pan, combine the Pinot grapes and Concord? grape eyeballs.  Bring the grapes to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. After ten minutes, transfer the grapes to a food mill to remove seeds and the skins of the Pinot Grapes.  Add the milled grape pulp to the pan containing the skins, sugar and wine and return to a low boil until the jellying point is reached.

Pinot Jelly

Arcturos Pinot Noir Grape Jam

Ladle hot jam into sterile jars.  Leave 1/4″ headspace and process in a boiling ater bath for ten minutes. 

Yields about 2 cups

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June Can Jam~ Herbed Strawberry-Balsamic Jam

Thank you Tigress!  The Can Jam was just the kick-start I needed to get back to my blog.

The “Hiatus” as it will henceforth be called was an unplanned lull caused by a busy schedule coupled with a lack of motivation and the death of a computer.  I’ll be detailing the causes of the hiatus and all of the very exciting things that happened while I was away in the coming weeks.

However, back to The Jam.  Tigress has a deadline.  In order to be a part of The Jam, this post had to be up by Friday, so I had to get my berries selected and jammed with enough time to get my post done before then.  I am a horrible procrastinator and usually wait until the last minute but I have soccer tonight and a meeting all day tomorrow and Murphy and his stupid laws haven’t been very kind to me lately so I wanted to make sure I didn’t get eliminated by missing my deadline.

This month’s featured ingredient was berries.  Joel and Dana at Well Preserved announced it after the last Can Jam Roundup.  They have lots of helpful tips for berries and jam on their site and it is an excellent blog in general~ you should check it out.  No.  Really.  Go now.

8 qts of strawberries

The first of three lugs of berries from Urka.

Any kind of berry would do, but something local and in-season is preferred.  Lucky me, strawberries arrived early so I got to go out to Urka Farms and pick some last week and again yesterday.  I used the last of the berries I picked last week to concoct this delicious jam.  I love jam in general, but this stuff is soooo good.  I will definitely be making some more.

Herbed Strawberry-Balsamic Jam   Printable Version

Ingredients:

  • 1500 g strawberries
    (500 g of mine were whole; the other 1000g were sliced)
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
    (If you read my Rhubeena post, you’ll remember my rant about recipe quantities.  I’ve again included a photo to avoid confusion.  If you didn’t read the ‘beena post, what are you waiting for??)

    Freshly-picked rosemary

    Three sprigs of rosemary about three inches long.

     

  • 900 g. sugar
  • 9 T. Balsamic vinegar
  • coarsely cracked black pepper; about six turns from the mill or 1/2 tsp.

Process:

  1. Place 2-3 small plates in the freezer to chill.
  2. Add berries, sugar and rosemary to a large sauce pan.
  3. Bring mixture to a boil; boil 2 minutes stirring frequently.
  4. Remove mixture from heat and allow to steep from 2 to 24 hours.
    (Or as long as it takes you to pick 20 more pounds of strawberries.)
  5. After your berries have steeped, return the pot to the stove; add balsamic vinegar and cracked pepper and return to a boil.
  6. Prepare your jars and your boiling water bath.
  7. Allow the sauce to simmer at a medium-low heat until it thickens.
    Keep a close eye on the sauce during this process; the jellying point can be easily passed resulting in jam more like taffy than jam.  Test for jellying by spooning hot jam onto a chilled plate; jam is ready when you push it and it wrinkles.
  8. Skim foam from the jam’s surface and remove rosemary sprigs.
  9. Ladle jam into hot jars and add lids.
  10. Process the jars for ten minutes in a boiling water bath.
Strawberry Balsamic Jam

Rosemary Strawberry-Balsamic Jam

I’m trying to go the pectin-free route with my jams this year (although I might crack and make one batch of freezer jam because it is yummy) so this jam is a longer-cook variety.  The result is a really dark, rich jam.  The balsamic vinegar also adds a depth of color to the finished jam.  My photo doesn’t do it justice but the color is amazing.

The rosemary is very subtle but after my first taste-test I was worried that 6 turns of pepper was too much. I shouldn’t have worried; the finished product has just the right amount of spice and even the little people in my house with less-refined palates enjoy it.

Oh, I almost forgot.  I still have lots of strawberries to can so check back soon; I’m thinking a Strawbeena is in order.

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Lavender’s Blue . . . (April Can Jam)

When the Can Jam ingredient was unveiled here I was both excited (because I have lots of herbs growing) and anxious (because I had no idea what to do with all those herbs). 

Food for Thought, a local company specializing in organic and local foods sells a variety of jams infused with herbs or blended with wines.  I’m a huge fan of the strawberry basil.  However, I don’t have any basil growing and I finished off all the unsweetened frozen strawberries in the freezer.   I do have lots of lavender so I decided to attempt a version of blueberry lavender jam.  I was out of blueberries so I had to buy local organic berries from Oryana, but I still managed to make a local jam.

I searched the Internet and found various recipes for blueberry lavender jams, but none were exactly what I wanted.  Most required pectin.  Some called for grape or apple juice concentrate.  I opted to make a long-cook, pectin free blueberry jam and add lavender.

First, get a tea infuser and fill it with freshly-picked lavender.

Tea infuser filled with lavender

Convenient measuring cup

Screw the cap on the infuser and dangle it in the sauce pan.

ready to steep in blueberries

The tea infuser makes a lovely "sachet".

Add the berries.

3 1/2ish cups blueberries

Add the sugar.

Lots of sugar

3 1/2 cups of sugar

Add two tablespoons of lemon juice and simmer until bubbly.

Let the lavender steep in the jam for about two hours.

Bring the jam back to a boil.  Check frequently to see if the jellying point has been met.  Once the jam has set, ladle into hot jars and process in a hot water bath for ten minutes.

5 8 oz. jars

Look! I got more than three jars!!!

I haven’t done a side by side comparison with Food For Thought’s jam, but it sure was tasty on a slice of sourdough from Bay Bread!

Blueberry lavender jam on toast.

Yum.

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Can I Jam Carrots?

In January I signed up for the Can Jam Challenge.  I canned two three different batches of marmalade as part of the citrus challenge last month.  You can read about my my marmalades here and here if you haven’t yet.  I was also lucky enough to be selected by Tigress as the random winner of beautiful labels for my next 6 Can Jam entries!  Don’t you just LOVE random!   The labels are made by Lelo in Nopo and you can see samples here.  My jars are going to be so beautiful with her custom labels on them!  So now, what do I make that’s deserving of her artwork??
This month’s featured ingredient is carrots.  I’m thinking some sort of pickled carrot, but I vaguely remember a carrot marmalade recipe from my exhaustive marmalade recipe search last month.  I’m rather fond of marmalade after our brief encounter in January.

I E-mailed Providence Farms, my CSA, to see if they had any carrots in storage that I could buy, but no luck.  Andrea said they could dig some, but that she thought they would be “soup-worthy.”  I’m sure they would be a delicious addition to soup or stews, but if I pickle carrots, I want them to be crisp and crispiness is questionable, so I broke down and bought non-local, organic carrots.  This challenge will be so much more fun when I can use local or homegrown ingredients!

I’ll be posting the finished carrot recipe the week after Valentine’s day, so check back to see what I come up with!

For now, here’s a (rerun) picture of some canned-up summer bounty!

jams, sauces and pickles

See, I can jam, and pickle and sauce.

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Yes January, I CAN Jam Citrus Successfully!

Maybe you read my January Can Jam post from earlier this week.  If not, let me summarize: my lemon marmalade was a flop. It was too bitter and upon opening a canned jar, it was cooked a bit too long; the orange peels had candied and the jellied part was thick and hard to get out of the jar.  When presented with failure, I feel compelled to try again.  So today, (Ding! Ding!) round two! 

Look what I found!! 

Blood Oranges

Yay! I finally found the blood oranges I've been looking for!!

I looked everywhere (or so I thought) for blood oranges and then found them in the least likely place:  Tom’s, the little neighborhood grocery three blocks from my house.  But, with a bag of Blood Oranges in tow, I decided it was time for my do-over. 

Since my last attempt was a total flop learning experience, I felt prepared to try again, but I couldn’t find a recipe that called specifically for blood oranges.  My last ingredeint substitution had bad side effects, so I decided that I should try two recipes and see which turned out better.  I usually have good results with the recipes I find at Simply Recipes, so even thought the lemon marmalade didn’t work out, I decided to give it another go with her orange marmalade  recipe.  And, despite the bad results with not removing the pith on my lemons, I chose this marmalade recipe from Alton Brown as well. 

Of course, I’m not one to just blindly follow a recipe, so I made some modifications. 

I started the Alton Brown recipe first.  In the picture above, you can see my oranges sliced and in the pan, ready to go.  To the oranges I added the zest and juice from an organic lemon, and six cups of water.  I brought it to a boil, set up my canning pot, and started prepping the oranges for my other recipe. 

Oranges Simmering

Oranges simmered for an hour.

I juiced my oranges until I had two cups of juice.   This took five Blood Oranges, not 12 Sevilles.  After I finished juicing the oranges, I used a spoon to scrape the pith out of  the peels and julienned the pith-less peels into narrow strips.  I saved all the membranes and seeds in my mushroom “jellying” bag.  I also zested and  juiced one plain-old organic lemon instead of using a regular lemon and a Meyer Lemon as the original recipe calls for.  By the time I finished prepping the oranges for the second batch,  Alton’s oranges were ready to be made into marmalade.    The peels were tender and the juices had cooked down a little.  I turned up the canning pot so that my jars would be hot and the water would be boiling when I was ready for it, brought the orange mixture back to a boil and added  the sugar. (Alton added sugar by weight, not volume, so I converted.  I’m not sure if it had any effect on my finished marmalade, but I don’t have a kitchen scale at present.) 

Fresh Ginger

Grating ginger into the "experimental" batch.

At this point, I decided to tinker with the recipe a little more.  I ladled a cup or so of the boiling concoction out of the big pan and into a little saucepan.  To this I added peeled, grated ginger.  I started with a pretty big chunk, but I would estimate that I added a knob a little under an inch by the time I was finished.  Then, I let both pots boil until they had reached the jellying point. (My thermometer said 222° and when I spooned a little onto a cold plate, it wrinkled.)  

Alton Brown's Orange Marmalade

Finished marmalade from the "Alton Brown" batch.

Once the marmalade was set, I ladled it into my hot jars, screwed the lids on and returned them to the boiling water bath for ten minutes.  The finished jars are so beautiful!  The red marmalade is IMHO, stunning, (and it doesn’t taste half-bad, either!) 

Julienned orange peels and Blood Orange juice

My oranges ready to go.

So, with the first batch out of the pans and off of the stove, I was ready to start cooking the second batch.  This marmalade was a lot more work than the first recipe.  I added the orange juice, lemon juice and zest, and orange peels to the pan.  Then, I added four cups of water and my mushroom bag filled with pectin-making bits.   The recipe says to boil this mixture uncovered for about thirty minutes.  I did this, but there was almost NO water left after twenty minutes, so I added two more cups of water and let it boil for the last ten.

jelly bag cooking

The pectin bag simmering in the jelly mixture.

After thirty minutes, I ended up with what appeared to be a pan full of orange peels in a little juice.  But the recipe says that it takes twice as much fruit as a traditional marmalade and produces a very intensely-flavored jam. 

 I pulled the pectin bag out to cool and poured the juice/peel mixture into my glass, one-quart measuring cup.  After cooking down, I was left with only 3 1/2 cups of cooked oranges.  The original recipe called for 7/8 cup sugar for each cup of orange mixture so I would need about 3 cups of sugar for the second stage of cooking. 

Simmering the orange parts.

Oranges and peels cooked down.

Once the pectin bag had cooled so that I could handle it, I squeezed the pectin out and into my pot of orange juice, added three cups of sugar and brought it all back to a boil.  Just like the last batch however, I ladled some out into a smaller pan and added ginger.

Once the marmalade hit the jellying point, I ladled it into hot jars and processed them in a boiling-water bath for ten minutes.  This recipe yielded just shy of three pints of marmalade. 

Blood Orange Marmalade

The three jars in the front are the finished marmalade from the second batch.

I’m glad I tried both recipes, but after all that work, I’ve decided that Alton Brown’s simpler recipe is actually the tastier of the two.  However, I think that may be due to the fact that it used TWICE as much sugar for the same amount of oranges.  If you prefer a very peel-filled marmalade with a more bitter, less-sweet flavoer, you might prefer the Simply Recipes marmalade, but the next time I make marmalade, I will be using Alton’s recipe as my base.

My Version of Alton Brown’s Marmalade Recipe:

5 Blood Oranges washed, quartered and sliced thinly (I don’t have a mandoline so I used a sharp serrated knife.)
Juice and zest from one well-washed lemon
6 cups water
7 1/2 cups sugar
knob of grated ginger (optional)

Bring to a boil oranges, lemon juice, lemon zest and water in a large, stainless steel pan.  Boil for ten minutes, reduce heat and simmer for 40 minutes or until oranges are tender. 
When the orange peels are tender, return the pot to a boil and add sugar.  If you are adding ginger to your marmalade, add it with the sugar.
Boil until the mixture reaches the jellying point. (222° or when it wrinkles on a chilled plate.)
Ladle into hot jars and process in a boiling-water bath for ten minutes.

Makes 4-5 pints.

My Version of Simply Recipes’ Orange Marmalade:

4-6 Blood Oranges
1 lemon
4 cups water
3-4 cups sugar (7/8 C. per C. of boiled orange juice and peels)
knob of fresh ginger (optional)

Wash all citrus fruits well.  Juice the oranges until you have 2 cups of orange juice.  Once you have enough juice, use a spoon to remove as much white pith from the orange peels as possible.  Julienne the de-pithed orange peels.  Place the membranes and seeds in a jellying bag or four layers of cheesecloth.  Zest and juice the lemon: add the zest and juice to the orange juice.  Add the lemon seeds and membranes to the jelly bag.
Pour orange juice, peel strips, lemon juice and zest into a large, stainless steel pot.  Add the water and pectin bag and bring to a boil.  Boil for thirty minutes, uncovered. (Watch your pot so that you don’t boil it dry; add a little more water if it starts to get too low.)
Remove pot from heat and let cool.  Measure the amount of juice and peels you have remaining and return the mixture to the pan.  When the jelly bag is cool enough to handle, squeeze the pectin out of the bag and into the pan.  Return the mixture to a boil.  Add 7/8 C. of sugar to the pan for each cup of juice/peel.  If you are adding ginger to your marmalade, add it with the sugar.
Boil until the mixture reaches the jellying point. (222° or when it wrinkles on a chilled plate.)
Ladle into hot jars and process in a boiling-water bath for ten minutes.

Citrus one: Angela, two!

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