Marmalade for Cheats

I know a lot of people who are scared of making jam. When I started, I was a little afraid myself. Here's a fool proof recipe for making the best marmalade you'll ever eat and it's all done in the microwave! Fruit season is on its way so if you're a novice then this is the perfect recipe to get your confidence up before trying out other jams and chutneys.

Here's what you need:

2 oranges
1 grapefruit
1 1/2 C water
3 C sugar
2 jars

  • De seed your fruit and chop it up finely, including the peel. You can give it a quick chop in a food processor but don't chop it so much that it's pulpy. Put it in a microwave safe bowl.
  • Add the water 

  • Cook on high for 10 minutes or until the fruit is cooked. It's going in again so if there are some uncooked bits don't worry.
  • Add your sugar and stir until it's all dissolved. I'm always a bit alarmed at the amount of sugar in jam recipes but I figure that you only use a small amount, and at least this recipe is free from preservatives and colours unlike some store bought jams.
  • Cook again for 15 - 20 minutes or until setting point is reached.
  • ** If you don't own a microwave you can follow the same process using a pot.

A word about setting points. I think setting jam is probably the main reason people are unwilling to give jam making a go. If you have a thermometer you can use that - most recipes have a setting point temperature in them. My favourite method is to put a teaspoon of hot jam onto a cool plate and wait a minute before running my finger through it.

When it's ready the line will stay defined on the plate and the jam on either side won't bleed back together. Easy peasy! And if you get it wrong it's not a disaster. You can just spoon it back into a bowl and give it another few minutes in the microwave.

All that's left to do now is leave the mix to stand for 3 or 4 minutes and then spoon into hot glass jars. If I was keeping these for a few months I would use proper preserving jars and I'd sterilise them first by boiling them for 10 minutes or putting them in a 100 degree C oven for 10 minutes. I'm going to use these jars of marmalade now so I just washed up some jars that I had saved.

This recipe made 2 jars of marmalade. If you don't like the chunks in it you can strain it through some muslin or over a sieve first and you'll be left with a lovely marmalade jelly. 

Super quick and easy and great for a last minute present for someone special.

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