shuna lydon

looking for something particular?

  • Google


Become a Fan

Bookmark and Share

Your email address:

Powered by FeedBlitz

Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 03/2005

« Croissants & Danish: Bakery Production by Vincent Talleu | Main | opening a restaurant. again. »

19 May 2010


Have you any hints for pommelo marmalade? Not that any pommelo has ever survived long enough to be preserved in our house, but sometimes I wonder if it's possible to capture that flavour in a jar.

hello Ayse, lovely name you have! I slept on your comment before coming to this conclusion: pommelos will take a lot of prep!! are you certain you want to undertake it? I agree with you-- a pommelo is best peeled by hand, patiently, and savoured fresh. ~ shuna

I have eaten your marmalade and can attest that it is deliriously delicious. Walter said it is a taste sensation!

In Desserts and Sweet Snacks Viana LaPlace suggests spreading vanilla ice cream over a crusty piece of untoasted bread and topping the ice cream with lemon marmalade. It's a good combination.

Imagine your kumquat marmalade in place of the lemon.

could you tell me a bit more about how you prep your fruit? the marmalade recipe I used last time just had zest and juice, with the pulp and rind discarded. It sounds like you just chop it up (bite size) and remove the seeds. correct? We ended up needing to add commercial pectin to get it to be firmer than a liquid, even tho we did use the seeds as you describe. Does the rest of the rind and pulp also have pectin in it naturally?

hello aaron, your question is fabulous. it's true that zest & juice do not become marmalade, they become jelly, and jelly making is not the same process.

all the 'white stuff' in a citrus fruit has natural pectin in it. {this is true as well for apple & quince pips, cores, skins.} also, marmalade is considered a 'whole fruit' experience so I like to have something to bite into.

I have "prepped" my fruit a number of different ways. when I don't have time for all that knife work I have sliced fruits on a meat slicer/mandolin. or I have cut the pieces slightly smaller than a quarter. it's what I have time for, to be honest. I think of marmalade prep like painting a room: I hate the prep but I like the painting. if you want to get all perfection on the cutting, fine, but in the end, after all is cooked & done, it will look much the same as if you just "prepped" the fruit the way you felt in the moment. Do let me know how this 'recipe'/method works for you, should you still have the desire to make more marmalade. ~ Shuna

I believe this is the same method for your awesome-sauce. Thanks for distilling your experience for us.

I love this article. As an occassional maker of jams, most recent of which is the humble tomato jam, I find this article something that I NEED TO PRINT and tag it in my recipe book. Maybe I wll do that, after improvin on the jam.

My favorite is grapefruip marmelade.
First I eat the grapefruits and save the skins in fridge till I have enough. Then cut them up and use about i lemon to 2 grapefruit.Cover with water, add pinch bicarb and pressure cook on high for 10 mins. Then add the same volume of sugar or a bit less if fruit is sweet. Cook open until ready. This method means you can do it all in an afternoon.

Although I am not a marmalade fan, I really enjoyed reading this and it gave me some inspiration to try something I have been thinking about--I'll let you know if the idea works, or even if it doesn't...

A superb article, detailed, informative, clear, and cozily informal! Bravo!

You seriously rock, those are some awesome instructions. I was making some loquat lemon marmalade the other day and every cookbook I turned to had a different amount of sugar.

I hate dealing with loquats, so I washed them, scored the skins, then boiled them up with some lemons that I squeezed the juice out of. Then I strained overnight in the fridge (not through a very fine mesh) and added sugar, boiled, then added chopped up lemons near the end. I think it came out good.

I was a bit annoyed with myself that I did my mothers christmas cake trick where I watched it for ages, then walked away and it was probably a little overdone :(

thanks for your response, Shuna - It's funny, commercial orange marmalades I've had have usually been way too firm for me, and also hasn't had pulp- just zest strings and harder-than-normal jelly. I guess that was my expectation, so when my recipe said just juice and zest, it seemed normal to me.

With other fruit jams, we certainly use the whole fruit, but marmalade seemed a different beast.

Thanks again.

I would love to know the intricacies of lime and grapefruit marmalades! Am I the only one

Hello Camille! Even if you are the only one-- no matter.

What's really important to know about lime and grapefruit is this: both fruits are quite a bit more bitter than the rest of the general citrus family. There are, of course, sweet grapefruits and subtler limes, but for the most part, no.

So when you're prepping these fruits you have to keep this in mind:

1. how much bitterness can I handle/do I want
2. how attached am I to these marmalades being set up well/firm
3. what proportion of peel to jelly do I want
4. am I going to mix this fruit with another, &/or how much am I going to want to spread on my toast

This is my "sort of rule of thumb" for limes & grapefruits: 30% of the fruit is prepped, 30% of the segments are removed from the fruit, 40% of the fruits are juiced.

When I prep my fruit I take the weight of those two 30%'s. BUT I DO NOT SOAK IN WATER MY SEGMENTS. I set the juice aside.

Are you still with me? I soak my whole prepped fruit and have in another container my segmented fruit and my juice. As you can 'see,' you won't need as much water and you'll have juice to cook tomorrow. So plan accordingly.

The next day I cook, in water, only what was soaking. When I am ready to add my sugar, I add the segments & the juice. At some point soon I taste the mixture. You will definitely need the high end of the sugar spectrum, but you may even need more. I like some bitterness but I also know most Americans don't... so I find a place we can all meet safely :} I hope this helps. let me know what you discover too? Have fun!! ~ Shuna

love any sort of marmalade- not only on toast but also drizzled on vanilla ice cream (i know, weird, right? habit i learnt from my mum when i was a small child). would love to have this straight from the jar you have stored it in- made by you. x shayma

I've made Meyer lemon, Seville orange, pink grapefruit, lime, and grapefruit/lime/orange marmalade, and had decided that Meyer lemon was hands-down the best. Then I made kumquat marmalade. Now I'll never make any other kind. It's all the things a marmalade should be, in perfect balance: sweet, tart, bitter, chewy, and sparkly jewel-like in appearance.

By the way, 'Pulled out from under the car by my tail' made me laugh out loud. How many times has life done that to me?

Shuna, I rarely bake because being a diabetic is so restricting to this kind of eating.

It doesn't stop me from reading this blog and devouring all you have to say; in effect that is how I get my weekly dose of something sweet.

It amazes me, Shuna, that no publicist has picked up on your talents and pitched you for a baking show; from what I read you would be awesome.

So, I tried both the methodology you gave and the recipe you linked, with mixed results.

I made Elise's recipe first, since it didn't call for soaking overnight. By the time it jelled, it was overcooked. It didn't taste bad, but it was slightly caramelized and didn't have the fresh lemon flavor I wanted. A couple of days later I made a batch according to you instructions. It tasted fabulous, but the fruit turned to mush long before it got to the jell point. Also, since it had less water even though I turned the heat down it was starting to scorch. I decided at that point to stop cooking it before it jelled, sacrificing texture for flavor. I wouldn't call it a failure, since it tastes fabulous and is still a usable product, but the end result was not what I was aiming for. Any thoughts on how I could be more successful with the next batch?

Meanwhile, since I had the canning set up going, I melted down the overcooked batch and an earlier batch where I'd mixed Meyer lemons and Eureka lemons that was too tart and too stiff (I'd used boxed pectin, which I'm sure makes me unworthy of associating with real marmalade makers) and recanned the mixture, which turned out to be a nice balance of flavors and textures.

hello Ruth, well at least I'm glad to hear you attempted this recipe/method since it was your question which led to this post :}

I'm sorry, though, that neither recipe produced the result you're looking for. In many ways I guess I have less expectations. I just hope it comes out, it tastes good and I can use it in a number of ways in the kitchen. I don't have any expectations about it's "set" because I know all fruit and heat sources and pots are different.

It's true that Meyer lemons need the least amount of time soaking & cooking in that water. Their skins are soft and porous and their flavour is a gentle perfume one needs to be vigilant not to lose.

Because of the Meyer's sensitivity I think your marriage of the two fruits was a great call. Even with 50% Meyer I think its definitive flavour shines out.

Also, using powdered pectin does not set you apart from "real" marmaladists. What it tells me, though, is that you want a really hard set, and that's hard to achieve without additional pectin or 'overcooking'/caramelizing the mixture. I find that when my whole mixture is cold it's always far more set than I even thought after testing it on a frozen plate or with a thermometer.

It may sound like I have not answered your question. This is because I think you answered your own questions by making 2 methods/recipes and finagling the two to get so something you want. But if you have further questions I will answer them as best I can. Thank you again for inspiring this post! ~ Shuna

Beautiful! I've never had lemon marmalade but after your post I’m now dreaming about it slathered on some warm brioche. Wish me luck, I’ve never made marmalade before but I’m going to attempt this recipe this weekend. Thanks so much for the beautiful post!

Thank you for your post. I'm keeping your pointers for next year, when my co-workers gives me more of her awesome kumquats. I made my marmalade without soaking and caramelized the whole thing. i was good, but it wasn't completely set up.

I didn't know that the pectin is in the seeds. i put mine in my tea steeper ball, and crammed it in too much.

next year, will be better.

Really interesting about the seeds. I'm gonna do this! x

Wish I'd found you three days ago. The recipe I found instructed me to remove the "white stuff" and the seeds- quite a laborious process given the size of a kumquat!!! I used 4 cups of kumquat, 4 cups of sugar and 8 cups of water per the recipe. I think mine is a little bit juicy- so next batch I will decrease water and leave in the "white stuff." Good idea?

Loved this article! Not only was it funny, but it was really informative.
I too am scared, not of the marmalade making process, but of the canning process! I don't really want to go through the drama of canning, so I think I am going to take your advice of cooling it down quickly and keeping it in the fridge (I'm kind of hoping it is so delicious, it won't be in the fridge for too long). Your article has given me the confidence to give it a go!!

Your marmalade looks delicious, there is nothing better than homemade foods

I have such wonderful memories of being in the kitchen with my grandparents - they candied peel, made jellies, marmalades, jams, pickles, preserves (even a wonderful pumpkin preserve that I've never had anywhere else). I try to capture that again whenever I can and the very attitude of your blog did that for me :)

I'll give this one a try!

As my grandmother said, if you like what you've done, who says it's not exactly, perfectly right?

My father-in-law gave me a bag full of lemons from his yard, so I thought I've give lemon marmalade a try. I Googled and came across this website; Shuna, I thought your step-by-step instructions and descriptions were extremely helpful, especially for someone like me who has never done this before! My batch turned out looking great - the only problem is that I find the taste to be quite bitter on the finish. Is this normal, or did I mess something up? I follwed your recipe exactly; the lemons that I used were quite thin-skinned so there wasn't all that much pith, and I used the max amount of sugar (60%). Just trying to learn for next time... Thanks!

Hello Leena, Sometimes, yes, a batch needs way more sugar. I find my own batches vary from each to each and I taste along the way so I can add more sugar if I need to. ~ Shuna

I just made some grapefruit marmalade (from another recipe) but found that maybe 1/5 brown sugar made a big difference in dealing with the bitterness.

This advice is AWESOME!! I am so happy to find another passionate about marmalade. I have made exquisite Minneola Marmalade and a Blood Orange failure. I will incorporate these ideas in my next batch. I was thinking to make something 100% I am considering a blend.

The comments to this entry are closed.


  • eggbeater

Find Me Elsewhere ~

Chef Resource

  • Chef & Restaurant Database

Eggbeater Archives