Fresh From Florida Citrus Marmalade
Back in September when I wrote about our move to this house I mentioned that I would be sharing more recipes in the Fresh From Florida series.
Renting a house with a mature backyard orchard is a dream come true. Unfortunately the citrus trees do not get enough sunlight and I suspect that they have not been fertilized properly in the past few years.
Some of the fruit is not pretty to look at but they taste great and that is all that matters.
This was my first time making marmalade and also making a jelly without using pectin. I am happy I attempted it because it turned into a beautifully golden amber yumminess! One thing I will say though is that I am much more appreciative of marmalade. It took me a good long time to scrape the white pith from the citrus peels.
When I reached the point at where I was about to say the heck with it and throw the peel in the pot, pith and all I thought about the flavor of marmalade. Some marmalade is very bitter flavor. That bitterness is what turns some people off of marmalade all together. The pith is what makes marmalade bitter.
I didn’t want to end up with a batch of bitter tasting marmalade that left a nasty aftertaste in my mouth and end up with something I wouldn’t eat. After all the fruit may have been free but sugar is expensive these days.
I made some slight changes to the recipe knowing that I could make some changes without affecting the safety of the marmalade. If you’re new to canning please get a few recipes under your belt before you make any changes to a tested recipe. Also read everything you can get your hands on about food canning safety.
One of the things I did not change was the ratio of fruit to sugar, which is 1:1 in a traditional batch of marmalade. I did cut back on the amount of citrus peel the original recipe called for. The thing I like about marmalade is the addition of the fruit peel but I do not like chewing a mouthful of peel in every bite.
The original recipe called for 3 cups of citrus peel. I decreased it to 1 ¾ cup. If you like more peel you can increase the amount up to 3 cups for this recipe. I am very happy with the way my first batch marmalade turned out. I’ve still got some oranges on the trees so I will probably be making a batch of orange marmalade. And possibly, if I am not sick of scraping the pith from the oranges peels I may also make a batch of pineapple and orange marmalade.
Recipe adapted from the Ball Blue Book
This Citrus Marmalade Recipe can be found in the Ziplist format below
Florida Citrus Marmalade
Fresh From Florida: Citrus Marmalade Recipe #canning
Serves: 7 pints marmalade
- ¾ cup thinly sliced grapefruit peel
- 1 cup thinly sliced orange peel
- 3 quarts water, divided
- 1 cup chopped grapefruit pulp and juice
- 2 cups chopped orange pulp and juice
- Equal amounts Sugar per cup of fruit
- Combine fruit peels and 1 ½ quarts of water. Boil 5 minutes and drain.
- Add fruit pulp, juice and the remaining 1 ½ quarts of water to the pot; boil 5 minutes.
- Cover and let stand 12 to 18 hours.
- After 12-18 hours measure the fruit and liquids.
- Add 1 cup of sugar for each cup of fruit mixture, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
- Bring to a boil on high heat stirring constantly, to avoid boiling over and scorching.
- Turn the heat down and continue to cook on a medium heat that sustains a rapid boil until the gel point is reached.
Checking for gel point
- If you have a thermometer when the mixture reaches 220 degrees it has hit the gel point.
- If you don't have a thermometer you can use the chilled saucer trick like I did when I discovered my rapid read thermometer died while I was making this recipe.
- Place a glass saucer in the freezer. After 20 minutes of rapid boiling drip about ¼ teaspoon of marmalade on the chilled saucer. Return the saucer to the freezer. After 1-2 minutes take the saucer from the freezer and gently push at the edge of the marmalade with your finger tip. If the marmalade wrinkles up along the edge it has reached the gel stage. If it doesn't place the saucer back in the freezer and continue to boil the marmalade, checking for the jell set every 10 minutes or so. Marmalade is normally a little runnier than I care for so I let my cook a bit longer and it firmed up very nicely.
- Remove from heat when gel has been reached and skim any foam that there might be off the top with the edge of a spoon.
- Ladle into prepared hot jars, leaving ¼ inch head space and wipe the rims clean with a damp paper towel.
- Place a flat lid on and put the ring on and gently tighten.
Process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.
Please practice safe canning measures!