March 25, 2019

Seville (Sour) Orange Marmalade

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Sour oranges or Seville oranges have been appearing in the Korean grocery stores for many years already but I ignored them not knowing they are the sour or bitter or Seville oranges that are best for marmalade. I only found out this variety when I went to visit my daughter in Savannah, GA. She has a "mystery" sour orange tree on her backyard. I brought home 2 fruits when they were still green. I looked online for similar oranges and discovered they are actually Seville/bitter/sour oranges when I sliced the fruits. They have lots and lots of pips which are rich in pectin that helps in the setting/thickening of orange marmalade without store-bought pectin. The sour juice has a very pleasant smell and mild flavor.

2 weeks ago, I bought a few Seville oranges from the Korean grocery store. They are only available the last week of February until middle of March. I made a few jars of Seville orange marmalade to last the whole year. I love its flavor and the slight bitterness. No store-bought marmalade can compare with the flavor. It's worth all the time and hard work.

Seville Orange Marmalade
2 sour or Seville oranges
3½ cups water
2 cups sugar
10 x 10 inch piece of clean muslin or cheesecloth
a foot of kitchen twine
3 small saucers
3 sterilized half pint wide-mouth jars
  • Place the muslin on a shallow bowl; set aside. 
  • Scrub the oranges clean and cut in half taking care not to cut the pips. Juice the halves. Scrape the pulp with a spoon and place on the muslin. 
  • Pour the juice over a fine sieve into a medium size stainless steel pan. Scrape the sieve and add the pips and pulp into the muslin. Gather muslin corners to form a bag; tie securely with the string making sure there are no holes. Add muslin bag to the pan of juice together with the water. Tie the muslin on the handle of pan.
  • Cut the rinds into 3 pieces and thinly slice; add to the juice mixture.  
  • Leave to soak overnight. This will help soften the orange rind and the pectin to be released. 
  • The next day, place the saucers in the freezer. 
  • Heat mixture to boiling and cook on medium heat, uncovered, for 2 hours. 
  • Remove the muslin bag into a plate and let cool. 
  • Measure cooked rind. You should have about 27 ounces; add water if necessary or cook some more. 
  • When cool enough to handle, squeeze muslin bag using a pair of gloves. Add the juices from the squeezed muslin into the orange rind mixture. Discard muslin. 
  • Turn on heat to medium, add sugar, and stir until sugar is dissolved. 
  • Increase heat to medium high and cook for 10 minutes without stirring. 
  • Remove one of the saucers from freezer and put a tablespoon of the marmalade. Leave for 1 minute in the freezer. If already set, it should have a crinkly skin and does not flow freely. If not, cook another 5 minutes and do a second and third tests until set. 
  • Leave the marmalade to cool completely, stirring once to evenly distribute the rind. Spoon into jars and store in the refrigerator. Enjoy!


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