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"Pure style is my way of life... a blueprint for living in the 21st Century"
Golden shreds
24 January 2012

 



Marmalade  is on the agenda and at the  second attempt  I  am lucky to bag  Seville oranges from greengrocer Pretty Traditional  in East Dulwich.  This is Emma`s marmalade recipe from my book - Pure Style Recipes for Everyday: 1.5 kg  Seville oranges, granulated sugar, water Cover  the oranges with water in a large, heavy based saucepan and simmer until soft, about 1-2 hours,  depending on the toughness of the peel. Retaining the liquid, remove the oranges from the pan and cut into halves, scooping out the pips with a teaspoon. Return the pips to the pan and boil rapidly for 10 minutes. This extracts pectin to help the marmalade set. Strain the liquid into another bowl and discard the pips. Using scissors or a knife cut the peel into pieces - bigger ones if you like it chunky and vice versa for a finer texture. I like my slices to be about 1cm wide and 3cm long. That`s because I like a good proportion of chewy peel.  Measure the strained liquid, adding  500g peel,  750g sugar to 450 ml liquid.  If I`ve lost more liquid than normal, either because I`ve boiled everything too for too long or the oranges are not quite as juicy , then I will top up with some water. Put the  liquid, peel, and sugar into  the saucepan and bring   to the boil slowly , then boil rapidly until setting point is reached (when you get a wrinkly look on the surface of the mixture).  Leave the hot marmalade to stand for 15 minutes. Sterilise approximately  8x250g  jars (and lids if you want to use them) by washing them in hot soapy water and then drip- drying them on a rack in an overn preheated to 140C. Put the marmalade in jars, either  cover with waxed discs and cellophane lids tied with string, or like me, simply  screw on the lids.  



  ACTION:  The low golden sunlight pours in through the windows and falls  across the worktop  burnishing the pile of  oranges  that seem to bask in its rays. The pan of  simmering fruit  soon  imparts a rich aromatic  smell which pervades the  Sunday afternoon kitchen.    



  Cut into halves I  scoop out the pips of the softened oranges. The chopping  board is soon flooded with pith and juice which I tip back  into the pan. Once the pips have done their pectin releasing act  I strain the mixture through a sieve, removing the pips and pushing any orange mush that comes out with the pips too.  



  I chop the peel  into quite chunky slices, because that`s the way I like my marmalade to be, and add it to the pan with sugar and boil the whole lot up for about 25 minutes or so.  A key thing is to keep stirring with a wooden spoon so that nothing sticks on the bottom. Once the whole bubbling mass starts to go into the slow rolling boil motion   like a kind of   molten  orange  lava  - then you`re on the way to the all important setting point. I test for the set by spooning a little of the marmalade onto to a frozen plate- if it wrinkles  it`s ready  



  I hunt for more jars, washing out  any  that  can be relieved of the dregs of some  encrusted  jam  or pickle which I know no one in the household is going to venture into  (Hmmm not very food saving, but I do swill out a  nearly  finished jar of tomato paste  with water and add it all to the  pasta sauce.)  



  The  bitter sweet  orange taste of  marmalade makes it just as appealing  with hard cheese and oatcakes  for pudding as it is spread thickly with breakfast butter and toast . PS The verdict from the 23yr old  for this year`s batch:  `It`s good mum " PPS  Very belated thanks for all the wonderful responses I had to the Pure Style Competition. It was hard to choose from all the entries - but there were two very succinct examples that summed up Pure Style brilliantly.  The winners have their books and  I would love to write a post including the wining entries, together with some of the other inspiring responses- I hope  I have all your permissions to do so!  

Tags: home cooking, marmalade


 
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