Fennel Orange Marmalade

Fennel Orange Marmalade

Fennel Orange Marmalade

The front yard nectarines are days away from exploding into ripeness. It’s a yearly race to harvest at peaking ripeness, but before the neighbors and dog walkers notice the dangling juicy orbs, denuding the branches of their bounty. In preparation for a potential nectarine jam session (of the Ball jar kind), I’ve been limbering up with a few marmalades. Last weekend was a batch of my favorite mouthwateringly tart lemon marmalade, from Susan Feniger’s Street cookbook. Today, I tested a savory Fennel-Orange Marmalade, only slightly adapted from Cat Cora’s recipe. Almost chutney-like in consistency and flavor, I’m envisioning spoonfuls crowning halibut steaks for July 4th.

Fennel Orange Marmalade
Makes two ½ pint jars
Slightly adapted from Cat Cora

 

2 Fennel Bulbs, thinly sliced and cored
½ Small Onion, thinly sliced
¾ c. Brown Sugar
3 Oranges, juiced
1 Lemon, juiced
½ c. Water
1 Orange, zested, supreme, and chopped
½ t. Fresh Ginger, grated (I didn’t include, but think it would benefit from the ginger’s bite.)
½ t. Salt
1 T. Chopped fresh Thyme or to taste

Heat fennel, onion, sugar, juices, and water in a saucepan and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes. Add zest, chopped orange, and ginger. Simmer for another 15-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Watch closely toward the end to ensure marmalade doesn’t burn. Once thickened and gelled, take off heat, add salt and thyme. Use your standard canning process if not consuming within two weeks.

 

What I Did Over my Summer Vacation

What have I been doing since I’ve been away?  Well, for starters, I tried my hand at canning.  My first attempt (notice I said “first”.  I have plans.) was lemon lavender marmalade made with lemons from my front garden.  I devoured a lovely lemon marmalade at Susan Feniger’s restaurant the other day – used as a bed for a top sheet of sour cream and a duvet of Ukrainian dumplings. Delightful! It had pucker-worthy tartness (too much for toast alone) and a clean brightness.

My version needs tweaking – a thinner slice on the rinds, a bit less sugar and more lavender.  I think I might try canning chutney this weekend.

Lemon Lavender Marmalade