I am participating in a year long Food In Jars Mastery Challenge hosted by Marisa from Food in Jars and the January challenge was marmalade!
I've made all kinds of marmalade's before, but mostly the standard citrus marmalade's such as orange. With this challenge, I wanted to step outside the box a bit and try something different, so I asked the question on my Facebook page: "if you were a marmalade, what flavor would you be?" The answers were so surprising! Pear, Peach, Cherry, Cranberry, Pineapple ... all over the spectrum, which was awesome.
I had some cherries I purchased over the the summer and flash froze in my freezer, and I just happened to have an orange, so Cherry Marmalade was born.
What is marmalade? How does marmalade differ from jelly or jam?
Orange marmalade has long been a favorite spread for bread and toast. You may be surprised to learn that marmalade was originally made from a completely different fruit, one not even in the citrus family. Marmalade's are used not only as a sweet spread, but also as the main ingredient in a variety of bread and desserts as well as in sweet and savory sauces for meat, poultry, and vegetables.
The definition of marmalade has evolved over the centuries. Originally, it was a sweet spread made from the quince fruit. The term marmalade has conflicting origins. One account holds that marmalade was created by a doctor treating Mary, Queen of Scots, for seasickness by mixing crushed sugar with oranges. The story infers the term marmalade is a derivation of "Marie est malade," a French phrase roughly meaning "Mary's illness."
However, most historians scoff at this explanation and believe the term came from the Portuguese marmelo for quince, from which original marmelada was made.
Marmalade first appears in English print in 1524. By the 18th century, the Seville orange (a bitter variety) had replaced the quince in marmalade popularity.
Today, the general definition for marmalade is a sweet jelly in which pieces of fruit and rind are suspended. The key is the rind, which gives lends a bitterness to delightfully balance the sweetness of the jelly.
Most marmalade's have a citrus base, either orange (preferably Seville orange), lime, lemon, grapefruit, or kumquat. To this general base, many other fruits can be added to pique the palate. (Source: About Food.com)
Original recipe from Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving
2 lbs fresh sweet cherries, pitted (I used fresh cherries I had pitted and frozen)
2/3 cup chopped medium orange
3 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon butter
Rinse cherries and orange. Stem and pit cherries, set aside. Cut orange in half and remove seeds. Finely chop orange pulp and peel. Measure 2/3 cup of chopped orange.
Place all the ingredients into a large saucepan on low and stir until sugar has dissolved. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cook rapidly to the jelling point (220 degrees on a candy thermometer), stirring constantly.
Remove the pot from the heat and skim foam. Fill half pint jars with the hot mixture, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Wipe jar rims with a damp paper towel and put lids on.
Process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes. Remove jars and allow to cool 24 hours on a towel on your kitchen counter-top. Store jars in pantry up to one year. Opened jars need to be refrigerated.
Yield: 4 - 8 oz jars
Yield: 4 - 8 oz jars
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