Make dinner tonight, inspired!

Wondering what to make for dinner tonight? This is your place for quick and healthy meal inspirations. Here you'll find recipes for seasonally focused dinners, desserts, breakfasts, and everything in between.

My cooking focuses on the freshest ingredients prepared in a simple and careful way, to highlight their uniqueness. My own diet is primarily vegetarian, but does include sustainable fish and seafood, and is gluten free.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to sharing some of my favorite recipes with you!

28 January 2011

Grapefruit & Meyer Lemon Marmalade with Rose Geranium

I read recently that the legendary 'jamstress' June Taylor makes a meyer lemon marmalade with rose geranium. Ever since hearing that I have been obsessed with locating a recipe. Hers doesn't exist anywhere that I can find, nor does she have a book, so I adapted another recipe to include those same flavors.

I happen to love rose geranium although it's one of those flavors that if taken too far can end up tasting rather like soap. Though at its best the flavor is delicately floral with an intense perfume scent. I'm starting to see rose geranium used in many pastries and confections and it delights me that others are also starting to appreciate this lovely (and easy to grow) herb.

The jam came out absolutely perfect although I had many doubts during the process. It's very very lightly set but still definitely set. It's such a refreshing change from so many heavily jelled jams. The color is a lovely jewel toned, almost amber color, with a gorgeous transluscence.

Marmalade is not particularly mysterious to make but does take some time and is definitely a labor of love. The great thing about this one though is that it can be made in one day. Many recipes you'll find take at least two days. If you find yourself with a garden full of lovely citrus like me, do try your hand at this. The results are incredibly delicious and very satisfying.


Grapefruit & Meyer Lemon Marmalade with Rose Geranium:
Yields about 7, 1/2 pint jars

5 pounds Ruby Red grapefruit
5 Meyer lemons
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2-3 additional lemons)
2 1/2 pounds sugar
10 rose geranium leaves
jelly bag or cheesecloth
powdered pectin- about 2 teaspoons
6-8 sterilized 1/2 pint jars and lids

1) Remove the skin from 4 grapefruits with a vegetable peeler. Cut the skin into 1/8" slivers. You should have about 2 cups. For the remaining grapefruits, slice off the ends so that you can just see the flesh. Using a sharp knife, slice off the peel and the pith and discard. Working over the pot you intend to use for making the jam, and using a paring knife, supreme the grapefruit segments, reserving the middle membrane (essentially the core of the fruit). Stop when you have about 5 cups of segments.

2) Remove the skin from 2 of the Meyer lemons and slice them into 1/8" slivers. For the remaining Meyer lemons, remove the skin and the pith and discard. Working over the pot you intend to use for making the jam, and using a paring knife, supreme the lemon segments, reserving the middle membrane (essentially the core of the fruit). Put membranes from the grapefruit and Meyer lemons in a jelly bag (or doubled up cheesecloth) and tie closed.

3) In a wide and deep pot, combine the grapefruit & lemon segments, grapefruit & lemon peel, and jelly bag filled with the membranes. Add the lemon juice and enough water (or juice) to equal about 2 cups total. Simmer until the grapefruit & lemon peels are tender, about 20 minutes. Remove the jelly bag and set aside until cool enough to handle.

4) Working over a large bowl, squeeze the juice from the jelly bag. The juice will extract easily at first but keep squeezing and wringing it out until you extract 1/3 cup of pectin. Add the extracted pectin and the 2 teaspoons powdered pectin to the pot along with the 2 12# of sugar and the rose geranium leaves. Place over high heat and boil, stirring now and then, until marmalade is between 222 and 225 degrees and passes the plate test. (ie: spoon a little onto a frozen plate and put in the fridge for 3 minutes. If it thickens like jam, it's ready.) When the jam is done, fish out the rose geranium leaves and discard.

5) Meanwhile, put 6 sterilized 1/2 pint canning jars and lids on a baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm. When jam is done, remove jars from the oven. Ladle jam into the hot jars, filling them as high as possible. Wipe the rims. Fasten the lid tightly. Process for about 15 minutes in a hot water canner. Allow the jars to cool until a seal is made on all the jars. Keep at room temperature up to 1 year.

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