Oh My, Darling Clementine Marmalade

Clementine Maramalade

The Business at Breakfast

Marmalade is pretty British, as far as preserves go. Even then, there is controversy as to whether you should have the zest chunky or fine, and some people even think that you should have no zest at all. They are entitled to their opinion, although I think that is really just a citrus jelly!

I find that it is not until you leave a country that you start to miss the things that you used to take for granted. Marmalade is one of those things, and I enjoy making preserves. However, I have not been able to find reasonably priced marmalade, and neither have I been able to find Seville oranges here either. Seville oranges are much sharper than their normal edible counterpart, and thus make the perfect balance of sweet and sharp that is required in most good preserves. They are also only in season for a short time, December to early February, so most marmalade production happens in the early part of the year, when it is too cold for planting, but the festivities over Christmas are out of the way.

Having resigned myself to the fact that I cannot make traditional orange marmalade, I am currently embarking on a series of experimental marmalades including lime, lemon, and grapefruit.

Heather at Breakfast by the Sea suggested that I try clementine marmalade. If you haven’t already seen it, I really recommend you have a look at her blog, it has great recipes and some really beautiful photography.

I hadn’t thought of clementines, but they are a better replacement for Seville oranges, if you want a sharp, but still distinctly orangey flavoured marmalade. This one is the perfect trial marmalade for a recipe that I am developing, which I hope to blog about later.

I found some lovely clementines on our local market with the glossy leaves still attached. This appeals in the waste-reduction geek in me, because citrus leaves make a really tasty tea. Give them a good wash, and then steep them in boiling water. Add a bit of cinnamon stick if you want to, it will be just as good.

As with many of my preserves, I used Pam Corbin’s Preserves book. I used the cut fruit method for marmalade, but amended the amounts slightly, for what I thought was suitable for the clementines.

Medium Cut Peel for Marmalade

Not as Fine as I Would Like

Recipe: Clementine Marmalade


1.5 kg clementines

3 l water

200 ml lemon juice

2 kg sugar

5 tbsp cointreau.

I probably took this a little too far while trying to get this batch to set, and it had gone from beautifully bright and orangey to having a more caramel flavour. If I had pushed it any further, I would definitely have burnt it. To compensate, and inject a little more orange, I stirred through the Cointreau after the jam was off the heat, but while it was setting before potting up. You can also leave the Cointreau out, if you prefer.

Having done a little reading up, it seems that clementines catch a little easier than Seville oranges. This being the case, you need to watch it like a hawk as it approaches the setting point. I would even take the unusual step of advocating stirring at this point, so that parts of the marmalade cannot catch and burn. As always, the setting point is reached when the jam reaches 104.5°C, or when it wrinkles when you perform the fridge test.

You need to leave it in the pan to set a little, so that the zesty bits don’t all sink to the bottom of the jars when you pot them up. Pot the hot jam into hot, sterile jars and seal immediately. Lovely, tasty orange marmalade. Really great on toast for breakfast. Thanks for the suggestion, Heather.

I left a layer on the bottom, in case I did catch any of it. This will feature in another recipe later on. Well, you didn’t  think I would throw it out, did you?



Filed under Feast

8 responses to “Oh My, Darling Clementine Marmalade

  1. It’s hard to cut the peel really thin, isn’t it! This sounds nice and probably ideal to make around Christmas time to give as a gift. I’m waiting to see where the leftovers will feature!

    • It’s a good job that I’m a thick cut kind of girl, really 🙂

      I probably could have got this thinner, butI didn’t really have the time to spend cutting, so I did a quick and thick job.

      First post should be tomorrow, with the actual leftovers, but I actually made this specifically to develop a different recipe, but there are lots of tests that I need to do on that one, so that will be a little while yet.

  2. Liz

    My favourite marmalade is cumquat (my mother grows them) and I have to admit to occasionally making it as a jelly. I also really enjoy grapefruit marmelade and in fact had some for breakfast this morning. I haven’t found seville oranges in Melbourne either – although you’d think they’d grow well here.

  3. My friend in Sydney also has a cumquat tree, but it didn’t throw much fruit out this year, otherwise I’d have made it for her too (not obsessed at all, am i?) It’s a shame, because I have never tasted cumquat, so would have loved to see how this compared.
    Funny that you don’t have Seville Oranges either, I would have though that Melbourne would be perfect for them. Perhaps they are protected, like champagne or Cornish Pasties, and can only come from that region?

  4. Seville oranges are usually available in mid winter.

  5. Hello Wild Wood, thanks for the tip. Unfortunately, I live in the Netherlands, where cheese is a compulsory part of every meal, especially breakfast. They don’t seem to approve of marmalade, and so I think that they see no need for the constituent parts.
    Actually, I shouldn’t say “unfortunately”. I really like living here, I just lament the lack of breakfast preserves 🙂

  6. Pingback: Cor, Love a Roast Duck | ediblethings

  7. This looks so great. I love clementine marmalade but haven’t made it in so long! Thank you so much for sharing! Can’t wait to make it at home.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s