In the autumn, I don't know why but it seems like the right time of year to lay down stores for the winter ahead and that's when I like to make jars of preserves. Think I'm a secret food hoarder, mind you its not a secret to some!
Well its not really autumn yet, though its felt like it in recent days here in the north west, but I bought some gorgeous plump pink grapefruits from my local market at the weekend and rather than eat them all for breakfast I decided to make some marmalade with some of them.
I've been making this marmalade recipe for years and years, why? Because its so easy to make and I do like easy...and it tastes so nice and because its home made (and I love home made as much as I love easy) you can play with the recipe a bit...add grated fresh or stem ginger...add a teaspoon of whisky to the jar before you add the finished marmalade...put some edible glitter in if you like, add whatever extra kick or extra loveliness you fancy. Make it chunky, make it fine...make it your way.
This year I'm trying to improve my Seville orange marmalade, so much so that I want to enter the national marmalade awards with it if I can get it up to standard; you can follow my exploits here.
Its a fairly old Nigella (Lawson) recipe from her Domestic Goddess book and its made with pink grapefruits and preserving sugar and lemons and that's it.
Not much skill required really...and no fancy equipment (like thermometers!).
2 pink grapefruit, weighing approximately 500g
1.5kg preserving sugar (bought from most supermarkets)
Juice of 2 lemons
(you will need 4–5 8-ounce jars)
1. Place a saucer or a small plate in your freezer, this will be needed to test the setting point of the marmalade later on.
2. Put the pink grapefruit into a large saucepan, fill with enough water so that they float freely, bring to the boil and simmer gently for about 2 hours, by which time the grapefruit should be very soft. You might need to turn the grapefruit if they are very big.
While the grapefruit is cooking sterilise your empty jars by putting clean washed jars into a sink or bowl and pour freshly boiled water from a kettle over the jars to cover them.
3. After the 2 hour simmer remove the fruit to a board or a plate (a plate keeps all the juice in one place). You don't need to keep the water the grapefruit was boiled in, this can be thrown away. Halve the grapefruit and pick out any pips (include the smaller ones if you can, and discard all these). Slice the cooked grapefruit thinly, (leave it thicker if you like your marmalade chunky) and then chop it, using the whole fruit and skin and pith. (if you have a food processor you can use the pulse setting a few times to chop the fruit if you like?).
Take care at this stage as any hot preserve will burn or scald.
If your messy like me give your jars a good wipe with a clean cloth. Don't forget to label with the date.
Enjoy on hot buttered toast and with a cuppa on a lie-in weekend (in bed with Saturday kitchen on TV) x.
Dinner Recipes At Sonia's Kitchen on this occasion.
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