Last week I tried something new, like many Gozitans I made use of the Seville bitter oranges which are grown locally to make marmelade, something I had never been interested before. But the scent and colour of the fresh bright orange fruit on the trees locally made me want to try my hand at making marmelade, but besides, one of my new Gozitan friends, Tessie, brought us three kilos of organically grown oranges fresh from the tree, and she also gave me a recipe to make this delicious bitter jam. So, full of enthusiasm last Monday I gathered the stuff that I needed to start. Fine brown sugar, weighing scales (which the flat does not have but Tessie brought, lemons, also brought by my friend from her own tree. The pictures will tell of how I faced some challenges due to the fact that the flat did not have the right pot for cooking marmelade, but I managed with a pan that has a thick bottom. I ended up with so many pots and we shared most of them out to friends and neighbours because we ourselves only eat a little of marmelade. I tasted it and it was very much to my liking, bitter, tangy, with a sweet after taste, but everything in balance. Yes the recipe was good and simple too. It was interesting to see the fruit preserved in this way, and to see the process of getting it from the tree into the jars. Taking part in a little bit of tradition here which I surely enjoyed.
This type of orange has very many pips in it, these pips are used, cooked for a little while and the juice strained and used in the marmelade as pectin.
Above, here I had to weigh all the sugar into lots of 500gr and use the pan six times filled with 6 lots of fruit all measured out. The large pot I had being very thin almost burned immediately so I transferred it this way, it took a long time, most of the day to do it this way but it worked and all the marmelade succeeded I am happy to say.
Apart from a lovely taste, I like this marmelade for its bright colour, only fruit and sugar used, nothing else. mouth-watering.