Great colour in this grey winter light

Like swallows on their summertime visit Seville oranges are here for a short time,  make the most of them while you can.

With coarse thick cut laces of peel suspended in amber jelly Marmalade is an eccentric treat. It seems almost perverse to take possibly the bitterest fruit ever and make jam, it’s a wintertime ritual I would hate to miss. Delicious on crunchy hot toast, perks up a steamed pudding, wonderful stirred into fruit cake mix.

Indescribably bitter

Here’s my reliable, painfree recipe for marmalade.


  • 1.5 kg Seville oranges
  • 3.5 lt water
  • juice 2 lemons
  • 2.5 kg granulated sugar
  1. Wash oranges, put them in a large pan with the water, cover with a lid and bring to the boil, then remove lid and simmer for 1-1.5 hours til the skin is soft. Leave fruit to cool in the water.
  2. Here comes the messy bit, best done on a plate to catch the juices. Remove oranges from cooking water and slice flesh into strips, cut to suit you, I like mine to be chunky. As you go save pips into a bowl.
  3. When all the flesh is chopped put pips back in the water in the pan and boil up for 5 mins  to extract pectin.
  4. Strain out pips and return liquid to pan along with sugar and chopped peel. Boil hard ’til setting point is reached.
  5. Pot up into warmed sterilised jars.
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