Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Lemon Marmalade

What do you do when you find yourself with a gallon of cut up lemons? Lemon curd? I already have some in the freezer.... Lemon meringue pie? Love it, but I'm likely to eat the whole thing.... I settled on lemon marmalade. Processed in a canner bath, it stores easily and can be shared with friends.

Using a micro grater, I tried to get as much grated peel from the lemon pieces as I could. This was challenging, as the chunks were hard to hold onto. The yellow peel is an important source of oil and flavor.

Next, I cut the lemon pulp away from the rind, making sure to remove the white pith and seeds. The pith is bitter, so I was careful to keep it out of marmalade. I ended up with about four cups of lemon.

Dump the pulp and four cups of water into a heavy duty pot. Bring to a low boil, reduce the heat and simmer. I let it cook down for a good hour or two. Add four cups sugar, stir until dissolved. Let simmer another hour.

It's important to cook it to the "jell" stage, so that it thickens up to a good jam consistency when cooled. I'm lazy, so I just guess. Other people (cooks who aren't lazy) put a plate in the freezer ahead of time, so they can test the jelly by spooning a little onto the frozen plate. It cools quickly this way, and you can tell if its jelling appropriately.

Tonight, I'm having fresh baked bread with butter and marmalade, with a cuppa tea. Delicious!