Yesterday was all about grounding myself, recouping, and getting back to basics. Turkey soup took care of the recouping, laundry took care of getting back to basics, and the one thing that always helps keep me grounded is canning.
There are so many recipes I want to try, have thought of trying, might want to try, might try if I ever have the time, and some I might never try because the ingredients just don’t appeal to me. I’ve made jams, jellies, preserves, spreads, sauces, syrups, butters, conserves, and pickles and for the most part have liked 95% of those I’ve made.
The one thing I had not made, however, was marmalade. The thought of eating the rind of a lemon, lime, or orange was not something that sounded good to me. Then I opened my mind and tried a recipe that called for lime zest – Kiwi-Lime Jam. The results were so good that I had to scour my recipe books and find other recipes that called for citrus zest.
After looking through my cookbooks and going through several searches on the Internet, I decided on a recipe that I had all the ingredients on hand and was fairly simple — Lemon-Kiwi Marmalade. Although this recipe called for using the entire lemon, not just the zest, I figured I’d never know if it was any good, if I didn’t give it a try.
The recipe I found called for Meyer lemons. I have no idea what these are and did not take the time to research it, but did find out they are apparently sweet. Meyer lemons are not something I have ever seen here in Michigan, so I decided to substitute half the amount of regular lemons along with a sweet orange. I also decided to add more kiwi to the recipe — those lingering doubts about large amounts of citrus peel prevailed.
The results? Well, I decided to toast a slice of English muffin bread and cover one half with the Lemon-Kiwi Marmalade and the other half with Kiwi-Lime Jam.
I decided to start with the lemon-kiwi, thinking if I didn’t like it, I would at least be able to finish off with something I knew I liked. The first bite was bitter. Not unbearably bitter, but more bitter than the kiwi-lime. The second bite I savored a little longer in my mouth, taking in the subtle orange flavor and the mild kiwi. Already I was getting used to the bitterness of the lemon. The third bite…well let’s just say I wished I’d covered the entire slice of bread with the lemon-kiwi. Although I enjoyed eating the kiwi-lime half, I would have loved to savor more of the lemon-kiwi marmalade.
This morning my breakfast will consist of a slice of English muffin bread completely covered with the lemon-kiwi marmalade. It’s definitely one of my new favorites. Here is how I made it.
2 Lemons with ends cut off and seeds removed
1 Sweet Orange with ends cut off and seeds removed
10 Ripe Kiwi peeled and thinly sliced
3 Cups of Sugar
The night before making the marmalade, prepare the lemons and orange by cutting off the ends and removing the seeds. Quarter lemon and put in food processor with one cup of sugar. Put the entire lemon in, peel, membranes, pith and all. Process till very fine. Quarter the orange and put in the food processor with one cup of sugar. Process till very fine. Combine the processed lemon and orange in a glass bowl. Cover and let sit overnight.
The next day, peel and slice the kiwi. Place kiwi in a bowl and combine with one cup of sugar. Let sit for one hour or more.
Combine lemon and orange mixture with kiwi mixture in large stock pot.
Bring to full rolling boil, watching closely that it doesn’t scorch. Reduce heat to medium-high and stir constantly until mixture thickens. This took about 30 minutes.
While mixtures cooks, prepare jars and lids. When the marmalade is the consistency you like, remove from heat and fill jars, leaving a 1/4“ head space.
Cover jars with hot lids and bands and process in water bath canner for 15 minutes.
This recipe yielded 3 – 8 oz. jars and 4 – 4 oz. jars.
I have always been afraid to try recipes that are beyond my comfort zone. Having never eaten marmalade, I had no idea what to expect. My preconception of a bitter, sour, inedible spread was unfounded. I am so glad I stepped outside my comfort zone and tried this recipe.
From now on my new motto is going to be: When life gives you lemons…make marmalade, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.