Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }

OlgaKriger/iStockPhoto / Getty Images

Marmalade, according to one legend, was originally created for Mary Queen of Scots as a cure for seasickness after a voyage from France. The orange confit was called Marie est malade. More likely, it comes from the Portuguese word marmelo, or quince, the fruit from which it was originally made.

Marmalade now comes in a variety of styles. It can range in colour from dark orange to light, contain chunky peel or thin translucent slivers. It can be made from bitter and sweet oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes and grapefruit. I think the best marmalade is made with the bitter Seville oranges that are in markets now for a short time.

Cooking 101: Lucy Waverman decodes cooking techniques everyone can master

The principles of making it are like other jams, but marmalade is easier because it always sets. Seville oranges are full of pectin, a natural substance found in the pith, skin and seeds of many fruits. When pectin is used along with sugar and an acid, it forms a jelly. Pectin can be bought in powdered or liquid form at the supermarket, but natural pectin has a better flavour, requires less sugar and gives the jam a gentler, lighter texture.

Story continues below advertisement

To start, rinse the oranges well; the peel is sometimes treated with a wax coating. The peel must be tenderized with long slow cooking which helps to extract the pectin from the pith and seeds,

Simmer three pounds of oranges in 10 cups water for about two hours, covered, or until soft. The oranges should be squishy. Remove and cut in half. Scrape out the pulp and seeds and place in cheesecloth. Return to the orange water in the pot. Simmer together for 10 more minutes, squeezing the cheesecloth occasionally to remove any further pectin.

Meanwhile, slice the peel into thin or thick slices, dice it or even purée it in the food processor, whichever you prefer. Add as much back into the liquid as you like, along with the granulated sugar. You will need about three to four pounds (1.5 to two kilograms) sugar for three pounds (1.5 kilograms) oranges. One way to figure out the sugar quantity is to measure the liquid and peel together in measuring cups then add an equal amount of sugar. As I like my marmalade tart, I usually add ½ cup (125 ml) less. Stir in the juice of two lemons for further pectin.

Fast boiling is the secret to good flavour and a quick set. If the marmalade sets quickly, it will retain the bright colour and fresh flavour. It takes about 15 to 25 minutes depending on your pot size.

To test if the marmalade is set, have several saucers chilling in the freezer. Place a spoonful of the mixture on one saucer and let it cool a few minutes. Push your finger through the marmalade; if it’s set, the sides should crinkle. Alternatively, a sugar thermometer should read 220 F (105 C).

When you test the marmalade, take the pan off the heat to stop further boiling. Marmalade that boils past the setting point cannot be resurrected. If it’s not set, return the pan to the heat and continue boiling. Retest after a few minutes.

Wait 20 minutes before spooning into sterilized jars to avoid the peel rising up. I use the dishwasher to sterilize jars, but I also refrigerate the marmalade as I do not process it in a water bath. It will last several months in the fridge.

Story continues below advertisement

Marmalade has myriad uses. It can glaze ham or chicken, flavour poached fruit or cakes, or make a sauce for duck. My favourite treat is toasted sourdough, topped with salted butter and a healthy spoonful.

Need some advice about kitchen life and entertaining? Send your questions to lwaverman@globeandmail.com.

Plan your weekend with our Good Taste newsletter, offering wine advice and reviews, recipes, restaurant news and more. Sign up today.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies