Freitag, 8. Februar 2013

Preparing Orange marmalade: first day

We ordered oranges, lemons, tangerines and grapefruits from an organic farm from the lovely island Mallorca (Spain). They shipped the fruits in 3 days, very convenient and all in all the price is not higher than store bought in our neigborhood - however they manage to survive.
But there is one big difference: Here it is not that easy to buy good oranges. Most of the time they sell those boring variety called Navel in our shops, sweet but bland. I visited Mallorca quite often (the northern part) and was always delighted by the taste of the freshly picked fruits, so this is much better.

Now we bought a mixed box (10 kg) with citrus fruits of different varieties and one box seville oranges. Seville oranges are also called chinese bitter orange. A seville orange provides little flesh, some zesty sour juice and a bitter but very aromatic peel - simply the best fruit to make orange marmalade. You cannot buy seville oranges in our town, it is simply impossible. They don't sell these in the supermarkets or at organic farmer markets and stores and there is only one italian shop where one may find seville oranges, but last time the prices were incredible high because seville oranges are unknown to local customers and therfore rare. Lucky for me there is the internet and there are internet friendly spanish farmers.
For my marmalade production I used 12 sevilles oranges and 2 lemons:

 Other ingredients are 3.5 l water and 1.7 2 kg sugar. That is all, nothing artifical.

First I cut the peel into wedges down to the flesh but left the flesh intact:

 Then I cut the peel wedges with a kitchen processor into very finely shredded slices:

And squeezed the peeled fruits to get the juice and the pulp, skins and pips separated. I used a potato press, seems a little bit strange but it worked wonderful.

I put the squeeze dried pulps, pips and skins into a thin cotton towel and tied them into bag.

I filled the shredded peels, juice and 3.5 l Water in a huge pot and submerged the bag into it. This has to rest 1 night at a cold place (basement). This treatment will help to soften the peels and initiate the pectin provided by the cells of skins, pulp and pips to develop. Tomorrow I am going to cook the marmalade...


Hiroyuki hat gesagt…

What a timely post! I mean, my father called me yesterday, and he said he would send another box of natsu mikan (a type of citrus fruit). I have wanted to make marmalade with some of them.

Looking forward to your next post!

Fräulein Trude hat gesagt…

Yes, it is the season. My mom ordered a few jars and some of the candied orange peels too after she heard what I am doing (she rang me up this morning). I think I am going to cook some more tomorrow. We both like the original bitter oldenglish style marmalade. For less bitterness you should boil the peel wedges 5 x in cold water for 5 minutes, changing the water each turn and rinse the peels 5 x.