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Dilly Pickled Onion Slices on Punk Domestics

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    Thursday
    Mar032011

    Orange you glad you love marmalade?

    iPhone camera + being in a hurry = blurry photo

    What? You don't LOVE marmalade? It's okay. I didn't like it the first 5 times I tried it either. I don't think I liked it until I was about 25 really.

    I'm going to admit it: once in a while, I eat commercially-made preserves. I have to tell it to you straight. I have been known to eat and actually enjoy the mass-produced stuff now & then.

    Yes, I lovingly craft my own preserves in small batches, using my favorite French copper preserving pans. I do it with genuine appreciation for the fruit I am using, which is hand-chosen, farm-fresh and organic whenever possible.

    I like to think that the best preserves are the ones made in a cozy kitchen that is dappled with golden sunlight. That right outside the kitchen window are the sounds of cheerful birds chirping. In the distance, children are laughing as they run after the ice cream truck. The person who gently stirs the preserves is wearing a cute eyelet-lace-trimmed apron -- a gift from her warmhearted mother-in-law. The sterilized jars waiting to be filled are all WECK brand. The adorable Pugs snoozing on a nearby rug are both house-broken. (This is the part where you hear the screeching sound of the phonograph needle being dragged backwards over the record album.) Wouldn't that scenario be lovely? Not always realistic though!

    I have hardly been home for the past 2 or 3 weeks, so lately I have found myself at a table in a restaurant or diner for breakfast, staring down an assortment of commercially-produced jam. I'm not going to be a snob about it. I think products like Knott's Berry Farm Orange Marmalade might have stirred within me the desire to start preserving as a child. My mom never bought orange marmalade, but my favorite color is orange, so naturally I am drawn to all things orange; color & flavor-wise. I remember the first time I tried orange marmalade. I hated it. Thank goodness I eventually came to my senses.

    When toast is part of my breakfast -- especially the incredible toasted sourdough slabs at The Original Pantry Cafe in LA -- I reach for a little plastic packet of jam or jelly, peel back the foil and realize that I'm hopelessly addicted to fruit that's been cooked with sugar, whether it is made my the pint or by the pallet.

    Now I make marmalade from Limes, Meyer Lemons, Grapefruits, Seville Oranges, Blood Oranges, Cara Cara oranges, and Kumquats. No, not all at once, but now that I think about it, it might not be such a bad combination!

     

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    Reader Comments (4)

    Orange marmalade is the only jam I DO like! And I like the Smucker's version better than the fancy chunky gourmet kind. The expensive jar I bought is languishing in my fridge, and every time I look at it I wish I has some Smucker's.

    Sarah, you're a girl after my own heart!
    My favorite preserves growing up? Smuckers Apricot~Pineapple. My grandma would buy a jar for me as a special treat. My grandma has been gone a really long time, but seeing Smuckers in print, you just brought all of that back for me.
    (You are the second person who has mentioned Smuckers to me today. It's kept a smile on my face.)

    Such a great tag line they have too, that whole "with a name like Smuckers....." thing.

    Hey, have you been to the Pantry Cafe` for breakfast? It's just a hop, skip and a jump for you.

    March 3, 2011 | Registered CommenterBrook Hurst Stephens

    I want to make marmalade. I LOVE it. Do you have a class?

    March 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Chinn

    Ohhhh, I love marmalade! My most recent favorite was a great orange ginger marmalade that a gal who's B & B we stayed at made. I've been trying to find a comparable marmalade since... No go. If you know of one, I'd love to see the recipe and I'll try to make it! My current favorite is strawberry orange marmalade that I made last week. Delicious!!!! Bon Maman is my favorite store bought, at least right now! But I seldom meet a marmalade I don't like! LOL! Thanks for your great site! So inspirational!

    July 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSuzan
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