Leggi questo post in: Italiano
and here’s the third installation of orange-themed posts. i’ve already written about my orange toothpaste and orange-lemon liquor. that liquor sure is yummy, but you only use the outermost peels for it, so what do you do with the rest of the fruit? you can’t just eat 15 citrus fruits before they dry out. you could squeeze them and drink them or freeze the juice in ice cube trays to use throughout the year. or you could make marmalade.
i’d already made lemon-ginger marmalade and both plum and mele cotogne (which gets translated as quince, though i’m not sure if they’re really the same thing) jams. i’d forgotten that i already had an orange marmalade recipe from my mother-in-law, so i looked online. and this recipe from rose di burro really intrigued me. (here’s the google translation of it)
the first time i followed every work of the recipe… well, almost. i can’t stand liquors and jams that are too sweet, so i always put in less sugar. this time i “only” used 700 gr. (which still seems like so much!! i really need to learn how to use pectin so i can put in less sugar.) i wasn’t totally convinced about the procedure, putting the fruit slices in water for such a long time and draining it out, thereby losing the juice, but all recipes consider some way or another of getting rid of the bitterness of the white part of the orange peel. and i was afraid that the peels (even though i cut them up more than indicated). i used up the fruit left over from my first batch of arancello (orange liquor) and then additional intact fruit, making a double recipe (you can find indications for cooking times in case of double recipes in the recipe). but there was no point in worrying because it came out *super* yummy! (and i assure you that i normally do not jump for joy over orange marmalade) the peels are really soft and almost melt in your mouth. they’re a bit cumbersome when spreading on bread, but who really cares when it tastes so good?! (can you guess what the other marmalade is on this ikea plate in this photo? that’ll be for another day!)
i also discovered another way of sterilizing glass jars in the oven instead of in boiling water on this blog. it worked really well and i was pretty happy about it because we have ridiculously hard water and so whenever i sterilize things in boiling water, they come out covered in limestone powder. so, half an hour in the oven at 160° C (320° F). but the caps still need to be boiled. oh well!
the second time i decided to try another recipe that i’d found that looked pretty good. orange and rum? yes, please!! (here’s mr. google’s translation) being incapable of following a recipe exactly, i was a bit lazy and didn’t peel the oranges, thinking that the peels would come off– and therefore the bitterness, too– straining it all (see the photo above). i added everything before cooking for 20 minutes, straining it, and then cooking another 30 minutes (ok, so i did it only another 20). i thought it odd that you didn’t add the rum towards the end so that the flavor wouldn’t get cooked off, and, in the end, you really couldn’t taste it. but the most annoying part (besides the fact that all that work paid off with one measly jar of marmalade!) was the bitter taste. so my laziness wasn’t so smart after all….
so the third time i made the same recipe (doubled), but i peeled the oranges with a knife as called for and i doubled the ratio of sugar. i also added the spices only after having strained the cooked oranges and the rum just 2 minutes before taking it off the burner. the result? the rum was stronger as well as the spices (but too much in my husband’s opinion), and it was sweeter, but there was still that annoying bitterness. even if it was nice to look at (see below?), we just couldn’t eat it on our breakfast toast. so how did i use it?
our friends just kept giving us citrus friends, so i made arancello a second time and then, with the fruit left over from that, once again the recipe i used first. this fourth time i also had some of my beloved brown sugar dulcita and i did a quadruple recipe (i told you: i didn’t know what in the world to do with all that fruit!), so i used 2 kg. regular sugar and 500 gr. dulcita, so for the regular single recipe it would be 500 gr. regular sugar and 125 gr. dulcita. (and i cooked it in two separate pots because otherwise how would i ever have been able to stir it all?!) once again, it came out yummy, though a bit less liquidy than the first time. i don’t know if that was because of the different sugar or the less juicy fruit. in any case, judging from my 4 marmalade tests, the first and fourth win! brava, rose di burro!