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Harvest Monday: The Marmalade Chronicles

April 15, 2013

The season for navel oranges wanes and for weeks, as I bring the drops in the kitchen, I’ve muttered that I need to make marmalade . I had hopes of doing it with my sister, as in recent years, but it was not to be.

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So after obligatory activities on my weekday off, I plunged into making marmalade at three in the afternoon. (What was I thinking?) The task is easier when my sister, Carol and I do tag team. We work well together in the kitchen. Several years ago we made 77 jars in one very long day. 

Later, as I slugged through the clean-up and dishes, the popping lids assured me of proper seals . I left the kitchen at 10:30 with 24 jars cooling on the counter and feelings of satisfaction and gratitude.

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Here’s how I make orange marmalade. I slice the oranges ever so thinly before cooking them. As a child I didn’t like my grandmother’s orange marmalade. Was it a childish palate or were the chunks of rind too large? I think the latter.

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My mom, like my grandmother, was known for her jams. Orange marmalade was her specialty. She used the MCP pectin recipe and so do I. Using an over-sized pot keeps the stove clean.

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With all the elements assembled, filling of the jam jars begins. 

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I still use a few vintage Kerr jars that belonged to my grandmother.

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And, on a lark, my sister, Carol and her husband came for the day on Saturday. She took marmalade home. Next year should we try for a record number of jars?

Harvest Monday is hosted by Daphne’s Dandelions. It’s a time to share what you’re harvesting in your garden or how you’re storing or using it.

Spanish Bluebells and Hellebores in the Garden

A Bouquet of Broccoli