During the winter, we have a plethora of citrus fruits to choose from. They're easy to find at the markets and stores, but don't just use them raw as you can also make preserves out of them so you could enjoy wonderful, delicious tropical fruits at any time of the year. Let me show you a recipe for orange jam!
Oranges are one of my favourite fruits, with a pleasantly tart, refreshing and sweet flavour and aroma. It's worth stocking up on these wonderful fruits so you would have plenty of them throughout the year. They're perfect for breakfast when served on buttered toast, or as a cream in pastries and dessert. Don't worry about the work as it's not a daunting task that takes days to complete. This is particularly true if you don't set out to make jam from ten kilograms of oranges. You can use even a few kilos to cook up some jam as it won't cause much of a mess and you can finish the process in a few hours without having to wait for months to enjoy the results. The British refer to orange jam as marmalade and love enjoying it every morning alongside a tasty cup of tea.
Here's a wonderful recipe that surely won't disappoint:
2 kg oranges
2 packets of gelling agent
4 tablespoons of sweetener (you can even use coconut flower sugar, or skip it all together)
How to prepare:
First thoroughly wash and peel the oranges. You can do this with a knife or potato peeler - what counts is that you end up with thin strips of orange rind. Make sure not to peel off the white layer under the rind before cutting up the fruit into small pieces. Remove the white parts stuck to the fruit as you won't need them. The next step is to cut the orange into thin slices. You can keep the skin between the segments as it gives a slightly tart flavour to the jam, making it even tastier.
This is followed by the most enjoyable part: put all the ingredients, the orange peel and pieces of oranges along with the sweetener and gelling agent into a large pot and cook until achieving a jam-like consistency. Don't worry if the oranges fall apart or if there are bigger chunks left as this will make the jam more enticing to eat.
Once you're ready, fill the jam into previously cooked jars - you can even add a hint of cinnamon or orange liquor on top of the jam. Wrap the bottles in a blanket and let them cool off. This won't take more than 1.5 to 2 hours, yet it will result in a fairly large amount of jam which you can enjoy for months on end.
If you'd like to take the experience of cooking orange jam to a new level, I recommend vaporizing some 100% Manna natural sweet orange oil during the cooking process. This will put you in a great mood as well as filling the whole flat with a wonderfully vibrant aroma.
For me, one of the most exciting parts of the process is the decoration of the jars. With a little imagination, the jars of orange jam can make great gifts, with the nicest jars serving as fine decorations on your pantry shelf. Tie a ribbon around the jar, place a label on it or simply top them with some white lace. You'll surely be pleased with the results and it will feel great to open them with the knowledge that you cooked the jam yourself.
Just as in the case of cosmetics, I believe in natural, homemade solutions when it comes to gastronomy, as this lets me know exactly what ingredients are in the final product. Enjoy the wonderfully fruity flavour and have fun cooking the jam!