Canning 2013

Marmalade

Moroccan kumquat marmalade with fruit from my own, tiny tree.

  • 830 grams of kumquats (weighed after being cleaned and sliced thinly)
  • 415 grams of white sugar
  • 415 grams of tupelo honey
  • 1cup of freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 5 star anise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 8-10 cloves
  • 3 T orange blossom water

Directions:

Rinse kumquats. Cut the green tip and slice the kumquat lengthwise then quarter it. Cut and discard the white membrane in the center and remove the seeds. Thinly slice the kumquats crosswise.

Weigh the kumquats once you prepare them. You will want up to the same weight of honey and sugar (or you can reduce it if you prefer your marmalade to be less sweet).

Mix the sugar, honey, kumquats, orange juice and lemon juice together. Add spices. Cover your bowl, and place in the fridge for at least 12 hours.

Next Morning:

Sterilize jars. Place kumquat mixture in a pan and cook, uncovered, on medium-high heat. Once the kumquat mixture starts foaming and boiling, reduce the heat to medium and use a wooden spoon to stir the mixture occasionally. Cook the kumquat mixture until the liquid evaporates and becomes syrupy. This will take around 45 minutes to an hour for this amount of kumquats. Test marmalade to ensure it has set.

Remove from heat and at 3-5 tablespoons of orange blossom water. Fill jars with marmalade – make sure that both the jars and the marmalade are hot when filling them. Seal jars in a water bath.  Let the marmalade jars rest on your kitchen counter overnight without moving.

Adapted from:  http://cookingwithalia.com

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When you can’t love, can

Nectarine Vanilla Preserves

  • 3lbs diced nectarines (I left the skins on)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 Vanilla Bean, scraped
  • Pinch of Salt

Boil all ingredients in a heavy bottom pot until mixture has cooked down (approximately 20 minutes).  Test gel with the “plate test”.  Once it is the correct consistency, add to jars, seal and process in a water bath for 5 minutes. This yielded 5 ½ pint jars with a little extra for sampling.

Made with nectarines from my garden

The Taste of Summer

The nectarine tree in the yard is pregnant with fruit.  The firm, juicy orbs are just days away from their peak ripeness.  I’m envisioning the warm crisps and flaky pies I’ll soon be making. The heavy clusters of fruit have already broken a large branch.  I should have culled them in March, but I missed the chance and always feel guilty not giving each one the chance to ripen.  A few sun-soaked fruit on the East side of the tree are already ripe.  I had a fresh bowl of slices sprinkled with key-lime juice this afternoon.  For my late night snack, I’ve concocted a ham and nectarine sandwich with tangy mayo, gruyere cheese and a bit of peppery arugula.  Summer has arrived.