Do you know what time it is?
Well…it’s marmalade time, of course!!! It is time to make that tangy, thick, sweet, and irresistible preserve that folks have enjoyed since the 1400’s.
Why is it the perfect time to make marmalade?
That is because between the months of November and February, those juicy and delicious Florida oranges are at their peak. Last year ,I missed the Florida orange season, and I was so disappointed because I really wanted to make some delicious, organic orange marmalade. As a mom, it is very important to me to cook things that my children enjoy and my son, Hayden really loves marmalade.
And so do I!
Even though I missed the organic Florida oranges last year, I went ahead and made orange marmalade from some grocery store oranges of unknown origin, just to see if I could do it and if we would like it.
I was hoping that it would come close to the organic orange marmalade that we typically buy from the grocery store.
It did! We loved it! We ate it all!
In our opinion, it is hard to beat a good piece of toasted sourdough, slathered in butter and delicious orange marmalade, with a steaming hot cup of coffee. Now come on, doesn’t that just sound amazing?
Well, this year, I was determined not to miss those beautiful, fresh Florida oranges. More specifically, I wanted to go on the hunt for some organic oranges, because I really didn’t want us to consume the peels of oranges that have been sprayed with pesticides. I wouldn’t want you to do that either.
The first step to making my marmalade was for me to find those beautiful oranges!
I eventually found my oranges in a neighboring town, at a store called Fresh Market. We tasted them when I brought them home from the store and they were so sweet! My son said they were the best navel oranges he had ever tasted.
So, that sealed the deal!
Time to make the marmalade!
I looked online and I also looked in my cookbooks for easy orange marmalade recipes, and after reading through the steps of several recipes, I put my own recipe together.
Because of the fact that my oranges were very large (larger than your average orange) ,when the recipe said to put one cup of sugar and one cup of water per orange, I knew that would not really be an adequate amount of sugar to get the desired sweetness.
I knew that I would have to alter the recipe.
So, Today I’m going to share with you the recipe that I used to make my easy and delicious organic orange marmalade.
We think it turned out pretty great!
I hope you will be inspired to go find some organic oranges, while they are fresh. Then, use my recipe or find one of your own, and make some delicious orange marmalade. This recipe is flexible based on the number of oranges that you are working with.
STEPS FOR MAKING EASY AND DELICIOUS ORGANIC ORANGE MARMALADE
- First things first, take the stickers off the oranges and give them a good wash, making sure that they are very clean.
- Chop the oranges into pieces and remove the seeds. The size of the pieces will depend on how you want your orange marmalade to turn out. I wanted mine very small, but not so small as from the food processor, which is what some recipes told me to do. I did not want mush, I wanted to be able to taste the peel.
- At this point, some recipes recommend that you cover the orange pieces with water and soak for several hours (anywhere from 4 to 24 hours), repeating this step once or twice, in order to remove the bitterness from the peel. We enjoy the bitterness of the peel mixed with the sweetness of the syrup, so, I choose to forego the soaking process.
- Place the chopped oranges in a large pot such as a cast iron Dutch oven.
- For each chopped orange, add one cup of sugar and one cup of water to the pot. (I added about 2 extra cups of sugar at this point, due to the large size of the oranges)
- Allow the oranges to macerate for at least three or four hours.
- Place the pot on the stove and bring the oranges, sugar, and water to a boil, dissolving the sugar into a syrup. Reduce the heat to a rapid simmer and cook, stirring until the syrup thickens enough to coat the back of your spoon with a glossy coating. This is also when your fruit will soften and darken in color.(approximately 30-40 minutes)
- You may want to taste the marmalade at several different intervals, to check the sweetness to bitterness ratio, adding extra sugar if desired.
- While the oranges are cooking, bring a large pot with either a bottom rack or a folded dish towel in the bottom to protect jars (I use a water bath canner) of water and canning jars, rings and lids to a boil. For 4-5 medium oranges, you will need around 4-6 pint-size jars or around 10 half pint jars. Boil the jars, lids, and rings for 10 minutes to sterilize.
- Remove your jars from the pot with a canning jar lifter, place a canning jar funnel over the jar and fill with the hot orange marmalade to a 1 inch head space.
- Wipe the rims of your jars with a clean damp cloth. Place the lids and rings on the marmalade filled jars.
- Place the jars back into the pot. Bring to a boil and process for 10-15 minutes. Remove jars and let cool for 24 hours.
- Once you open a jar, store the unused orange marmalade in the refrigerator.
This batch made over 12 jars of marmalade. I am so excited to have this in my pantry. I probably won’t have to make it for at least two years, now.
We are enjoying the marmalade immensely! I love knowing what the ingredients are and I love knowing that there are no preservatives in the marmalade. I don’t have to worry if my children or grandchildren eat it! Also, the taste is amazing !
The process is very easy, and fast! Making your own orange marmalade is a great introduction to canning, if you have never canned before! You will be so proud of yourself when you are done! And you will bless your family with something that they will enjoy so much!
Actually, the hardest part of making this tasty treat is finding the beautiful and sweet organic oranges! After that, it’s easy as pie!
HERE IS A LIST OF ITEMS I USE IN MAKING EASY AND DELICIOUS ORGANIC ORANGE MARMALADE:
- Enamel coated cast iron Dutch oven (but a large pot will do)
- A sharp cutting knife (I used a serrated bread knife)
- A cutting board or other cutting surface
- A pastry scraper for transferring the orange pieces to the pot after cutting
- Mason jars, lids, and rings
- A large wooden stirring spoon
- A canning funnel for putting marmalade in jars
- A jar lifter for removing jars from water bath canner
This delicious orange goodness also makes a beautiful gift to share with family and friends.
So…sweet pea…go make you some!!! Get those jars on the shelves.
If you do, please let me know how it turns out.
And may the Good Lord bless and keep you until we talk again!
Bye, Y’all !
Sharon at Southern Bella Home
For the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth.