2 snow days = marmalade 2 ways 

I was so excited to see that Marisa from Food in Jars is hosting a year long challenge on  her site. The Food in Jars Mastery Challenge  is meant to push you to learn new skills and techniques with a new focus each month. This challenge gets to the heart of what I want for my Mean Lean 2017, cut out distractions  and really challenge myself to stop saying no to what I want to do. Canning and preserving has become such a big part of our lives now I really wanted to spend this year improving my skills and learning new ways to put food up for our family.

January’s challenge is Marmalade. I have never been a fan of marmalade, all those chewy bits of rind and the overpowering bitter flavor. It’s never been something I’ve wanted to eat let alone make myself. In the name of learning new skills and techniques I was not going to back out of the first challenge. Just before we had a big snow storm last Saturday I went out citrus sourcing. One of my favorite jams is grapefruit and vanilla so I thought about making a pink grapefruit vanilla marmalade might be manageable. My back up plan was to get some Cara Cara or Blood oranges.  I was able to find Ruby Red grapefruit without much of a problem but I didn’t like the look of the Blood oranges available that day and went with Cara Cara  oranges instead. On my last stop of the pre-snow errand run I stumbled on some Satsuma Mandarins. I picked those up thinking that we could at the very least have a great snack while we were snowed in if they didn’t make it into marmalade.

For my first batch of marmalade I wanted to use a simple recipe to see if it was marmalade itself or  commercial marmalade I didn’t like. Food in Jars has several small batch marmalade posts that will give you a head start and explains the different processes that you can use.  I used Marisa’s Cara Cara Orange  and Ginger marmalade recipe , with a few adjustments.

  1. I boiled the rind for the full 25 mins to remove as much extra chew as I could.
  2. I switched out the ginger juice for the same amount  of  the water I boiled the rind in.
  3. I added the scrapped out seeds and pods of 2 vanilla beans to the pot when I started to cook the marmalade.  ( don’t forget to remove the pods before to put it into your jars)

Everything else was exactly the same as the recipe. I did get a looser set than I remember commercial marmalade being, but I prefer a looser jam texture anyway. It took quite a while to reach 220 almost 40 minutes I’d say. In the end I had 9 half pints plus  a small portion to test. The flavor is more bitter than the grapefruit jam I love but it was delish and I immediately started thinking about how I could use it.

The next day I couldn’t stop thinking about those satsumas and what other flavors I could combine with them. I have always loved the smell and flavor of clove and orange. It always feels so warm and cozy. I was dreaming about a warm wintery  marmalade with a little hint of spice from the clove on top of a warm clementine cake or English muffin. I got to cooking almost immediately.  

Satsuma and Clove Marmalade

  • Prep Time: 30m
  • Cook Time: 1h
  • Total Time: 1h 30m
  • Yield: 7 Half pints

You will need

  • 9 Medium satsuma mandarins
  • 4 c Sugar
  • 1/4 c Lemon juice
  • 10 Whole cloves
  • 2 c Reservedrind boiling liquid
  • 1 tbsp. Powdered pectin if needed

How to make it

  1. Peel the rind off of all 9 mandarins and cut to the size you desire.( I prefer very thin strips) Cut enough rind to make about 2 cups. Fill a pot with 4 cups of water and the chopped rinds. Make a cheesecloth bundle for the whole cloves and put it in pot with rinds and water. Boil for about 20 minutes.
  2. While you are boiling the rind, purée the manadarins and lemon juice by using your food processor or with immersion blender. Once rinds are done strain into pot with your mandarin purée place Clove/ cheesecloth bundle to the side for now.
  3. Into the pot with your mandarin purée add sugar* and reserved boiling liquid. Stir to combine. Place clove/cheesecloth bundle in the pot and bring ingredients to a boil. Heat until mixture reaches 220 degrees
  4. Always test you set as some fruit has less pectin than others, I generally prefer a loose set in my jam and now my Marmalade. Fill jars leaving a 1/2 inch headspace and process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes.
  5. * if you want to use pectin, whisk it into your sugar before you add it to the marmalade


See those little guys floating around in the half pint in front? For this batch I didn’t taste an enormous amount of Clove flavor so I did a test half pint with 3 whole cloves in the marmalade. My plan is to taste test in about a month or so to see if there is a more warm and cozy flavor or if I just wasted 3 cloves. I will let you know either way.


4 thoughts on “2 snow days = marmalade 2 ways 

  1. Kat, I love, love the combination of clove and orange also! I adore this idea. To boost the clove flavor I would add a few drops of clove oil. Culinary grade of course. I plan to try this!

    1. Great idea Victoria. I’ve never used Culinary oils before, do they have very intense flavor? Would it just be a small drop?

  2. Great post Kat! I’m loving the FIJ Mastery Challenge already, and have been making all sorts of marmalades – now I feel like I have to try one with mandarins! Camilla Wynne has a “Christmas Clementine” recipe that has a similar flavor profile in her Preservation Society cookbook I’ve been eyeing, and now you’ve convinced me. I look forward to following you along as we go through the year!

    1. That sounds great, almost exactly the flavor I wanted! I hope it’s delish. This is the best challenge.

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