It has been all about Glasgow in our household for the last 11 day as our athletes have fought their way on to the medal table at the Commonwealth Games. For anyone who isn’t aware the Commonwealth Games is like the Olympics for the countries of the British Commonwealth. Countries that range from the Pacific Islands to as far away as Kenya and Jamaica. As armchair cheerleaders it is tough to pick a side as we both have vested interests in the Kiwis, the Scots and of course our adopted homeland Australia. Luckily all teams have performed well and it is fun to be able to cheer on three countries as they swim, run and cycle their way to Commonwealth glory and of course what’s not to love about stadiums of enthusiastic Scots singing “500 Miles“; the unofficial anthem of the games.
It should be no surprise then that this week’s blog post is inspired by the flavours of Scotland or one flavour in particular; whisky. Now for anyone who thinks I can’t spell, whisky from Scotland does not contain an “e”. The word whisky in Scottish Gaelic is “uisge beather” which translated means ‘lively water’ or ‘water of life’. So does that mean this whisky marmalade is the marmalade of life?….hmmm food for thought. I have carried the small bottle of whisky, pictured above, around with me for years. It was given to me by a friend when I travelled around Scotland and as luck would have it I may be married to the only Scot in the world who doesn’t like whisky with or without an “e” ….oh wait that is definitely a really bad stereotype :).
Moving right along, the orange and lemon trees are positively groaning with fruit so now is the perfect time to make jam or marmalade. It wasn’t until I was halfway through the process that I remembered why I hate making marmalade (chopping up peel is no fun) I just have to remind myself that the end product is worth all the effort and fuss. As per the name this is a dark marmalade due to the dark brown sugar and the treacle that has been added.
Adapted from The Australian Womens Weekly Preserves.
- 6 medium oranges approx. 1.2 – 1.3kgm
- 2 medium lemons
- 1.5 Litres water
- 440gm white sugar
- 440gm dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons treacle
- 2 tablespoons whisky.
Peel oranges and lemons and slice the peel thinly. Chop off any hard pith from the edges of the segments and remove seeds. Chop the orange and lemon segments into chunks.
Place the chopped peel, chopped segments and water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Cover saucepan with lid, reduce heat and simmer for approx. one hour or until peel is soft.
Measure the peel mix and then add 1/2 cup of each sugar to every cup of mixture.
Add both sugars return to the heat and stir until dissolved. Bring to the boil then boil uncovered for 40 minutes. Test using the gel method as described below.
Gel Method: To check if the jam is set, place a small dish into the freezer. Once the dish is cold pour a small teaspoon of jam onto the dish. Place the dish back into the freezer to cool. Remove from freezer and run your finger through the jam, if the line sets then the jam is ready to pour into jars.
Stir in the whisky. Pour immediately into HOT sterilised jars. Seal immediately. I use transparent preserve covers to seal my jams.
Once opened, keep jam refrigerated.