This recipe is for a small batch of whole fruit marmalade. It yields enough for yourself and to give as homemade gifts. Don't limit yourself to spreading it on toast. Marmalade makes a great glaze for baked ham, a pan sauce for pork chops or spread on crackers with goat cheese.
Trim the ends of the blood oranges with a sharp knife. Cut each orange in half and remove the pith. Reserve and bundle the trim and pith in a square of cheese cloth and secure it with butcher's twine. This will add more pectin during cooking and help the marmalade set.
Stand each half on the cut surface. Slice the orange halves 1/8-inch thick. Then cut the half slices into quarters. You'll end up with very thinly sliced orange quarters.
Combine the sliced oranges with the sugar, vanilla and pinch of salt in a large stock pot. When all of the sugar has dissolved, add 4 cups water and stir again.
Tie the bundle of orange trimmings onto the pot handle and submerge it. Cover the pot and refrigerate it for 8 hours or overnight.
Uncover the marmalade and heat it over medium heat. Gradually increase the heat to medium to achieve a gentle but steady simmer. This stage of cooking can vary widely, from 45 minutes to over 1 hour. It only requires intermittent attention to skim any foam off the top, stir to prevent sticking and check the temperature.
The marmalade will set once it reaches 220 degrees F. You'll notice that the bubbles are thicker and glossy and it will be reduced by about half. For extra insurance do the plate test described in the notes.
Remove the pot from the heat and let cool for 15 minutes before transferring into sterilized jars with lids. You can refrigerate it or can it following these guidelines.
Plate test: One way to double check when your marmalade is done is by doing a simple test: put a small plate in the freezer for 15 minutes. Spoon a puddle of liquid marmalade onto the cold plate and let it set for 5 minutes. (Take the pot off the heat momentarily.) If it thickens to a jammy consistency, it is done.
Copyright 2021 Lynne Curry