Tis the season for making marmalade with all the lovely citrus growing here in Southern California. Boy, aren’t we (blessed) lucky to live where winter provides us with wonderful oranges, lemons, grapefruit, tangerines & lime. Sorry, if I am making y’all jealous right now.
I have to admit, it took me years to master a decent marmalade. My first marmalade were to thick and dark – overcooked. In fact, I wasn’t a big fan of making marmalade – too many steps! That is until I found a method to use the whole fruit (except for the seeds) Yep, no more peeling the skins from the pith or hassling with sticky cheesecloth. With my busy schedule I don’t have time for a more than two step process.
Not a fan of marmalade? You’ll be a marmalade convert with just one bite. I promise!
- 6 to 7 Meyer lemons (approximately 1 1/2 pounds)
- 5 cups water
- 4 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/2 vanilla bean
- pinch of salt
- Cut lemons in half lengthwise.
- Use a sharp paring knife to cut out the center membrane (the part where all the sections meet) and as many of the seeds as possible.
- Remove and discard end pieces, then slice the rest of the lemon halves in very thin pieces crosswise. Discard any remaining seeds.
- Pack enough lemon slices and any juice into a large measuring cup to measure 2 1/2 cups.
- Put the measured slices and juice into a large, nonreactive pot. Add the 5 cups of water.
- Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and allow to stand, uncovered overnight.
- The next day, measure out 5 1/2 cups of the lemon/juice mixture. (You can discard any extra).
- Put the measured amount back in the same large, nonreactive pot. Add all of the sugar.
- Split the half vanilla bean the long way. Scrape out the seeds and put those in the pot, along with the half bean itself.
- Add a pinch of salt.
- Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture reaches 220F on a candy thermometer. Reaching the final jelling point can take anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes.
- Fill hot, prepared canning jars to 1/4" headspace. Process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Reprocess or refrigerate and use any jars that have not sealed properly within 12 to 24 hours.
Or stop by the Front Porch Farmstand and snag a jar or two seasonal preserves (they go fast!)