I awoke with a sense of purpose today – to get my head down, put fingers on the keyboard and breathe life into Quiche ‘n’ Tell. And what better than a fruity marmalade to raise the inaugural toast. Ever since we arrived in South Africa a couple of months ago, one of my favourite things to
do has been shopping for food. And the fruits in this country are every bit as delicious as they look. I always end up buying more than I need and I’m not about to stop any time soon. This is a simple but yummy marmalade, great on a warm piece of toast and out of this world with Gruyère if you’re looking for grilled cheese with a difference.
I used naartjes (babies that would be born if oranges and sweet limes got hitched); but you can use either oranges or sweet limes or a mix of both and even throw a couple of lemons into the mix. I would love to experiment with different kinds of citrus. How wrong can one go?
It’s an easy recipe and the only time you’ll need a little patience is when you’re peeling and chopping the fruit. I found that cutting off the top and bottom ends of the fruit and then peeling off the rind with a sharp knife moving top to bottom while keeping the fruit vertically on the chopping board, works best. I then cut the long strips of rind into matchsticks.
- 6 large naartjis, sweet limes or oranges
- 600 g granulated sugar,
- 1 ltr water,
- Wash the fruit well, dry and peel or grate the rind. Be careful to leave out the white, bitter pith. Chop the orange segments into a rough dice and purée in a blender.
- Strain all the juice through a sieve and save a little more than half of the pulp.
- In a large pot, pour in the water with the juice, pulp and sugar and heat on medium, stirring till the sugar is dissolved completely.
- Throw in the rind and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it is boiling vigorously, reduce to a simmer and leave to bubble away. Don't forget to stir occasionally but for the most part leave it alone.
- The marmalade is done when the quantity is less than half and fairly thick. To check, drop a small teaspoonful on a plate and chill in the fridge for 10 minutes. If it sets into semi firm consistency your work is done.
- Leave to cool and then pour into clean jars and store in the fridge.
- The cooking time is approximate. It would depend on the juiciness of the pulp.