an appetite for marmalade

An appetite for marmalade

An appetite for marmalade is part of the #whatsonyourplate link party.

Hello everybody,

As I love a bit of marmalade on my toast in the morning – I can safely say I have an appetite for marmalade!  

Navel oranges have been in season over the last month which inspired me to have a go at making marmalade.   

I have never made it before, have you? 

Anyhow, you can check out the recipe and how I did it below but first I have a question for you …. 

Are women allowed to have an appetite?

As a child, my parents often entertained friends over lunch or dinner.  This meant lots of food and lots of guests around our family table.

As you may have realised, if you have been following my blog for a while, I love food!  I also love being outside and active which ensured I always had a healthy appetite. 

When said guests were present, I would heartily tuck in to the food on offer, obviously being mindful of ensuring guests had first choice!  

One lunch occasion stuck in my memory.  I must have been a teenager aged around 15 or 16.  The guests that day were a mixture of couples, some who I didn’t know very well.  

I was happily tucking into second helpings of jacket potatoes, quiche and salad.  One of the male guests looked at me and said “you eat a lot for a girl don’t you?” and his tone had a distinct hint of negativity to it.   

Now, I didn’t let his comment stop me from enjoying my food or changing my eating habits – no one is coming between me and my food!  However, that one comment could have had a huge impact on a young, teenage girl.  

It has since made me contemplate why does society discourage women from having an appetite?  

The use of such comments are subtly inferring that as a woman/girl we should be worried about the appearance of our bodies rather than the nutrition we are putting into them. 

Does society consider women eating freely and enjoying food as inappropriate? and why? 

Do we speak to our boys in the same way?  I believe we don’t. I think we are always encouraging boys to eat up, that they should have a healthy and big appetite.  

And are women discouraged from having an appetite for anything?

  • an appetite for money?
  • an appetite for careers?
  • an appetite for knowledge?
  • an appetite for sex?

I think historically this has been the case but do you think it is changing?  

I’d love to know your thoughts on this – let me know in the comments below.

An appetite for marmalade

So, back to making marmalade.

I used this recipe orange marmalade but only half the quantities.  This made three and a half jam jars.  

It was super easy and worked pretty well, although now the marmalade is in jars, it has set a little harder than perhaps it should.  I always slightly over cook things! 

It is also a little sweeter than I am used to.  I usually buy English Breakfast marmalade which is made from the more bitter Seville Oranges. These oranges are too sour to eat raw and are only available for a short period in January.   Next time I might try adding some lemon juice to counter out the sweetness (as per my mum’s suggestion!). 

Method for making marmalade:

What I loved about this recipe is that it seemed really simple compared to others which involved carefully peeling off the rind, and then the pith and saving pips in muslin pouches to add and take out to the mixture – faff, faff, faff!

However – you do need to start the preparation for this recipe the night before.  

You will also need to save up some used jam jars or purchase some from a kitchenware/hardware store.  Sometimes budget shops like Poundland/Reject shop will also stock them cheaply.

All jars need to be sterilised before using.  Wash lids and jars in soapy water and rinse.  On a baking tray arrange the lids and the jars open end up (without lids on).  Place in an oven at 100C/80C fan until the jars have dried.  Keep warm until you are ready to use them.  

To get started scrub the oranges to remove any pesticides or wax.  Halve lengthways and then thinly slice crossways. Place in a large glass or ceramic bowl together with the water.  Cover with plastic wrap and leave to stand overnight.

preppring oranges for marmalade

I had planned to make up the marmalade the next day, but then other stuff got in the way, so I didn’t actually make up my marmalade until two days later.  It will be interesting to see whether this makes any difference to the taste if I make another batch.

Transfer the oranges to a large saucepan.  Bring to the boil over medium heat.  Then reduce the heat and allow to simmer for one hour or until reduced by about one-third.

Cool slightly, then measure the mixture and add 1 cup of sugar per cup of fruit mixture.  Stir over a low heat until the sugar dissolves.  Increase heat to medium high and bring to the boil.  Cook, skimming off any dense froth from the surface with a large metal spoon, for 45 minutes or until setting point is reached.  

I found this bit quite hard as I wasn’t sure how much the mixture should have been boiling up.  I think it needs to be quite a rapid boil. 

To find the setting point, chill a saucer or plate in the freezer.  Remove the marmalade from the heat.  Place a teaspoon of mixture on the saucer.  Return to the freezer for 1-2 minutes to cool.  Push the sample of marmalade with your finger.  If it doesn’t crinkle/wrinkle, then cook marmalade for a further five minutes and then repeat the test.

Once it is ready allow it to cool to lukewarm.  With jam you usually transfer to the jars straight away whilst it is hot, but I saw a tip that recommends allowing the marmalade to cool before transferring to jars as this stops the rind floating to the top of the jar.  Once the marmalade has cooled slightly spoon into warm sterilised jars, seal and label.  Unopened the marmalade will keep for 12 months.  Once opened store in the fridge for six weeks.   

I had a creative moment making my labels:

orange marmalade label


If you want to make sure you never miss a recipe sign up for my newsletter HERE

Don’t forget to check out the other great blog posts in this link up party HERE

Thanks to the following ladies for sharing this link party and inspiring me to keep blogging:

Deb @ The Widow Baddass 

Donna @ Retirement Reflections

P.S. If you are looking for some other fruity ideas how about my Puff Pastry Plum Tarts or Blackcurrant and Vanilla Cheesecake

an appetite for marmalade

4 thoughts on “An appetite for marmalade”

  1. Appetite for food = appetite for life in my humble opinion. It annoys me beyond belief people who cast that sort of judgment. Oh, and I love marmalade but haven’t made it for years!

    1. Yes I totally agree – food is one of the great pleasures in life. Perhaps you will have time to make marmalade now you’re a lady of leisure

  2. Hi, Janine – Thank you for joining us for #WOYP with this great recipe. I love marmalade…and your labels are so cool!
    Thank you also for sharing your story of a male guest commenting on your eating. I agree that he likely would never have said that if you had been a boy. So discouraging and so damaging to the so many young ears! I’m glad that you were not swayed by his thoughtless comment.


    1. Thank you for your comments Donna. I wasn’t sure whether marmalade was just a British thing or not.
      My love of food thankfully outweighs any negative comments thrown my way however it’s easy to see how easily it could effect other young girls.

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