Thursday, January 21, 2010

Grapefruit Marmalade???

I am participating in a canning challenge at a wonderful blog I stumbled upon recently. The idea is to preserve one item every month using the water bath canning method. This months produce of focus was CITRUS. How much easier could that be for those of us living in the Central Valley of California. We can pretty much get free citrus all winter. In fact, we used the last of our orange juice during Sam's Christmas visit.....time to start squeezing again.


Because our neighbor (like most people around us) lets his grapefruit rot on the tree I thought that would be a good one to start with. Having NEVER made marmalade before (eating peels?) and not even questioning why you don't typically see grapefruit marmalade on store shelves (light bulb going on yet???) I dove right in.

Peeled about 8 grapefruit.....

...sliced off as much of the white part as I could...



...then I thinly sliced the peelings.

I at least had the good sense to do some research and found a recipe that addressed the bitterness issue. By boiling the peels separately first and draining the water (before adding the pulp and more water) most (but not all:) of the bitterness should dissipate. After boiling the mixture (without sugar) for 10 minutes, I let it cool overnight in the fridge.

The next day I added the sugar, cooked it for about an hour, couldn't get it to thicken properly, added more pectin and more sugar (and I usually make jam with the least amount of sugar possible) and cooked it some more. I am not printing the recipe....mostly because I deviated from it to the point of unrecognizability (is that even a word?).

The final product is pretty, has a consistency of blubber (like I would know) and tastes fairly tangy (sounds much more appetizing than oddly bitter) ...and I probably won't make it again (but I will eat each and every jar, dag nabbit).

If you want to see a successful presentation of marmalade check out the lime marmalade on the Tigress blog....beautiful photos as well.

13 comments:

melissa said...

If it makes you feel any better, I tried grapefruit marmalade a month or so ago and it came out as grapefruit syrup with wormy-looking bits of peel. It was a dismal failure, and I thought I followed the recipe exactly.

Don't give up on marmalade altogether. Sometimes you just have to keep at it till you find one that works.

Maureen said...

It DOES make me feel better...thanks Melissa, and at least it's edible :)

I think I may try orange next time....just to be safe.

MAYBELLINE said...

Maybe your efforts could be used as a glaze for roasted meat/poultry.

Roast a chicken as you normally would. About 1/2 hour before the bird is finished cooking, melt down some of your marmalade. Add some wine if you like. Brush it on your bird and let the glaze turn your bird into a beautiful, shining, and tangy presentation.

Maureen said...

That sounds so YUMMY...I am definitely trying the glaze idea, thanks!

Libby said...

Sorry your marmalade didn't turn out quite like you hoped! I took a marmalade class once where the instructor suggested using a vegetable peeler to remove the skins and slice it into strips--it has the advantage of taking off thin layers so that you don't have to cut off the pith separately. Maybe that would help with the bitterness issue? I hope next month's canning adventure turns out better!

Maureen said...

Thanks for the tip Libby. I would sure like to get this right since we have access to an incredible amount of grapefruit....no one much eats them around here.

Nate @ House of Annie said...

Better you trying to make something edible out of his grapefruits than let them rot out there!

Since you are using homegrown ingredients, would you like to enter this post in our Grow Your Own roundup this month? Full Details at

http://chezannies.blogspot.com/2010/01/rambutans-plus-grow-your-own.html

aastricker said...

I'm participating in the Can Jam challnege too and my first marmalade (lemon) was bitter and equally "blubbery" I suppose. I tried again though and ended up with two beautiful batches of Blood Orange marmalade. Just keep at it!

almostima said...

I'm definitely going to try the glaze idea! I, too, was swept away by the marmalade channel and now I have 6 jars of runny orange marmalade I need to figure out what to do with.

My other ideas is: ice cream topper and pancake syrup.

Kim said...

I'm sorry your marmalade didn't come out as planned. But it was a great try and I agree it would make a wonderful glaze!!
I found your site from the jam can, this was my first time making marmalade as well.
Kim
www.homestead-acres.com/blog

Mimi said...

I love that you are using a local grapefruit (and yum, I like grapefruit and grapefruit juice a lot)

My first adventures in marmalade had a boiling over incident ;)

Enjoy!

Maureen said...

Thanks for the encouragement gals...I do want to try it again. In fact we are getting oranges and lemons this weekend (Freecycle) and after I juice a bunch I may just have to have another go at marmalade...I MUST succeed!


Nate and Annie....what a fun idea, but I'm not sure I want to 'show off' my feeble attempt (I won't call it a complete failure as it is edible:) But thanks for the link...and I like your blog!

Maureen said...

Kim....LOVE your homestead series!!!