Winter, Seville Oranges and Marmalade

seville oranges marmalade
Homemade marmalade made with Seville oranges.
Every year during January and February Seville oranges (Bitter oranges) arrive in our local fruit shops and supermarkets. I’m not sure if it’s because I recently saw the film ‘Paddington’ (and he does love his marmalade sandwiches), but this year I decided to make some marmalade.

Paddinton loves his marmalade. From the film 'Paddington'.
Paddinton loves his marmalade.
From the film ‘Paddington’.

Of course, alternatively it could be having all the glamour of the Tudors every where you look, that I unconsciously made a few connections – Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, Mary Queen of Scots – marmalade! It’s one of those English things we were told at school that the word marmalade comes from Mary Queen of Scots when a French cook concocted a preserve from Seville oranges for a sickly Mary – ‘Marie est malade’. Not true, (doesn’t surprise me) a far more accurate history of marmalade suggests Henry VIII would have known the preserve which was imported from Portugal and made from quinces. Then it appears that gradually this recipe was adapted to use other fruit including bitter oranges.

buttered marmalade teacake
Split marmalade teacake toasted, buttered and topped with marmalade.

I used a BBC Good Food marmalade recipe which I’ve made before. And, in for a penny in for a pound I found an interesting recipe for ‘marmalade’ teacakes (light yeasted buns with dried fruit). It was really a basic teacake recipe with 150 grams of HOMEMADE marmalade dissolved in the milk that is added to the flour to make the dough. The finished teacakes looked nice and were pleasant when toasted and buttered, but I couldn’t specifically taste the marmalade flavour unless a bite included a chunk of shredded peel. Well, you know, why not spread with extra marmalade!

Marmalade-atop-buttered-marmalade-teacakes

Author: agnesashe

Artisan, blogger and passionate East Anglian working from home.

7 thoughts on “Winter, Seville Oranges and Marmalade”

  1. I think that those sessions making marmalade in grey and dismal post-Christmas days are the best. I love experimenting with different recipes too, from old style 3 day recipes to simple boil-up-the-fruit-whole-first ones. I think they all taste wonderful. And yes, the problem is you can end up giving far too many pots away.

    1. During your experimenting have you added stem ginger – I saw a recipe and wondered if the ginger is complementary or overpowering? Mind you I do love stem ginger anyway. Also, I have added whiskey before but couldn’t taste it!

      1. Yes, we love ginger. It’s hard to get it to the overpowering stage. I thought I’d put masses into a batch this year, and neither of us could taste it at all. Not keen on the idea of whiskey though, so I haven’t done that one.

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