Marmalade magic: Sweet or savory, the preserve is popping up all over -
Published Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 1:00 am / Updated at 10:45 am
Marmalade magic: Sweet or savory, the preserve is popping up all over
Spread the word
>> Marmalade is a soft jelly, often citrus-based, that includes the flesh and the peel of the fruit suspended throughout the jelly base. The bitterness of the peel offsets the sweetness of the jelly.

>> Chutney is a spiced condiment of Indian origin made of fruit or vegetables. It's typically served as an accompaniment to food, not as a spread. The spice level can range from mild to hot.

>> Conserve is generally a mixture of more than one fruit, often with added nuts and raisins, that is cooked until it becomes thick. It's used as a spread for breads, pastries and meats.

>> Fruit butter (apple butter, prune butter, etc.) is fruit puree or pulp combined with sugar, lemon juice and spices, slowly cooked down to a smooth consistency. The “butter” refers to its spreadability: There is no actual butter in the product.

>> Fruit curd is a creamy spread made with sugar, eggs and butter, generally flavored with citrus juice and zest. Lemon curd is the classic variety, but lime, blood orange and strawberry curd can be found.

>> Fruit spread is generally a reduced-calorie product made with fruit juice concentrate and low-calorie sweeteners replacing all or part of the sugar.

>> Jam is made from crushed or chopped fruit cooked with sugar, and often pectin and lemon juice. Jam can be a purée of fruit or have a soft pulp, but it does not contain chunks of fruit.

>> Preserves differ from jam in that large or whole pieces of fruit are cooked with sugar to the point where the fruit is suspended in a syrup base. The texture of preserves is not smooth like jelly or jam.

>> Jelly is simply sweetened and jelled fruit juice, a clear, bright product. It's generally made by cooking fruit juice and sugar with pectin as a jelling agent and lemon juice as an acid, to maintain a consistent texture. Jelly is firm and will hold its shape. Generally, jelly contains no pieces of fruit, although specialty jellies, like pepper jelly, may include pieces of jalapeño or other chile pepper.



Tangelo Marmalade
1 cup zested or thinly sliced Minneola tangelo peel (do not pack)
1 cup water
½ cup fresh tangelo juice
¾ cup water
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
2¾ cups finely chopped tangelo fruit, plus enough reserved juice to equal 3 cups (about 18 tangelos). Remove all of the white pith and fruit membrane from the tangelo segments before chopping the fruit.
5 cups sugar
½ teaspoon unsalted butter
1 (3 oz.) pouch liquid pectin

In a small bowl, combine the peel and 1 cup water. Let soak for 10 minutes. Drain and discard water. In an 8-quart pan, combine the peel with the tangelo juice, ¾ cup water and baking soda. Over medium-high heat, bring to a full boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the tangelo fruit. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes more. Remove the cover and stir in the sugar and butter. Heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar is dissolved completely.

Increase heat to medium-high and bring mixture to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Stir in entire contents of the pectin pouch. Return mixture to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Remove pan from heat. Skim off any foam. Gently ladle into hot, sterilized jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Wipe the rims of the jars and threads with a clean, damp cloth. Cover with hot lids and apply screw rings. Process half-pint jars in 200 degree F water bath for 10 minutes, pints for 15 minutes. Yield: 6 half-pint jars.

— Submitted by Mary Beardslee, Lincoln. Adapted from Tangerine Marmalade recipe from “Blue Ribbon Preserves” by Linda J. Amendt

Pear-adise Marmalade
4 cups ripe Bartlett pears
1 orange
1 lemon
1 small can crushed, undrained pineapple (8¼ oz. size)
¼ cup maraschino cherries, chopped
3½ cups sugar
1 box pectin powder
½ teaspoon butter

Peel and core pears. Finely chop the pears. Measure 4 cups of pears into an 8-quart saucepan. Remove colored part of peel from orange using a vegetable peeler, set aside. Remove and discard remaining white part of peel from orange. Chop fruit, reserving any juice. Add to saucepan.
Repeat procedure with lemon and add to saucepan. Cut orange and lemon peels into thin slivers (or chop) and add to saucepan. Add crushed pineapple in juice and chopped maraschino cherries to saucepan and mix thoroughly.

Measure sugar in a separate bowl. Mix ¼ cup sugar from measured amount and pectin in a small bowl. Stir pectin-sugar mixture into fruit in saucepan and add butter. Place over high heat and bring to a full boil, stirring constantly. Immediately stir in remaining sugar. Bring to a full rolling boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Ladle quickly into hot jar, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with lids. Screw bands tightly. Place jars in boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Yield: 8 half-pint jars.
— Submitted by Mary Beardslee, Lincoln.

Marmalade Baked Ham
1 boneless fully cooked ham (3 to 4 pounds)
12 to 15 whole cloves
1 can (12 ounces) beer or beef broth
¼ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup orange marmalade

Place ham on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Score the surface of the ham, making diamond shapes ½-inch deep; insert a clove in each diamond. Pour beer or broth over ham. Rub brown sugar over surface of ham. Cover and bake at 325 degrees for 1¼ hours. Spread with marmalade. Bake, uncovered, for 15-25 minutes longer or until a thermometer reads 140 degrees. Yield: 12-14 servings.
— Courtesy of
Taste of Home

Citrus-Marmalade Vinaigrette

1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons orange marmalade
4 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
1/8 teaspoon salt

In a small bowl whisk all ingredients. Chill until serving. Serve over fresh greens and vegetables. Yield: ¾ cup.
— Courtesy of Taste of Home

Orange-Pecan Salmon for Two
½ cup chopped pecans, toasted
½ cup orange marmalade
¼ cup reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 salmon fillets (6 ounces each and 1 inch thick)

In a small bowl, combine the first five ingredients. Pour ½ cup marinade into a large resealable plastic bag. Add the salmon; seal bag and turn to coat. Refrigerate for up to 30 minutes. Set aside remaining marinade.
Drain and discard marinade from salmon. Place salmon in a greased 11-by-7-inch baking dish. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork. In a small saucepan, bring reserved marinade to a boil; cook until liquid is reduced to 1/3 cup. Serve with salmon. Yield: 2 servings.
— Courtesy of Taste of Home

Three-Fruit Marmalade
1 medium orange
2 cups chopped peeled fresh peaches
2 cups chopped peeled fresh pears
1 package (1¾ ounces) powdered fruit pectin
5 cups sugar

Finely grate peel from orange; peel and section the fruit. Place peel and sections in a Dutch oven. Add peaches and pears. Stir in pectin. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in sugar; bring to a full rolling boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat; skim off foam. Ladle hot mixture into hot sterilized pint jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles; wipe rims and adjust lids. Process for 5 minutes in a boiling-water canner. Yield: 4 pints. Note: The processing time listed is for altitudes of 1,000 feet or less. Add 1 minute to the processing time for each 1,000 feet of additional altitude.
— Courtesy of Taste of Home

Tomato Lemon Marmalade
5 medium ripe tomatoes
6 cups sugar
4 cups chopped peeled tart apples (about 4 large)
2 medium lemons, seeded and ground
2¼ teaspoons ground ginger
8 whole cloves
Peel, quarter and chop the tomatoes; place in a colander to drain. Transfer to a Dutch oven; add apples and lemons. Cook and stir over medium heat for 15 minutes. Add sugar and ginger. Tie cloves in a cheesecloth bag; add to the pot. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and cook until sugar has dissolved. Reduce heat; simmer for 40 minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove spice bag. Carefully ladle hot mixture into hot half-pint jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe rims and adjust lids. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner. Yield: 9 half-pints. Note: The processing time listed is for altitudes of 1,000 feet or less. Add 1 minute to the processing time for each 1,000 feet of additional altitude

— Courtesy of Taste of Home

Mary Beardslee spent many mornings as a kid sitting down to a breakfast of warm, crispy bread topped with grape jelly or sometimes strawberry jam.

But when she discovered the bright, sweet-tart flavor of marmalade years later, those other spreads were toast.

An IT professional from Lincoln, Beardslee enjoys marmalade slathered on buttered biscuits and glazed on oven-roasted chicken, among other uses. She makes it from scratch, using whatever citrus fruit catches her eye at the supermarket or pears picked from trees in her yard.

Marmalade, it seems, is having a moment. Its popularity is spreading among home cooks, professional chefs, food bloggers, people with a renewed interest in canning and others. Some bartenders use it in cocktails, Food & Wine magazine featured artisan marmalade on its blog last month and there's a new cookbook devoted to it.

In her book “Marmalade: Sweet and Savory Spreads for a Sophisticated Taste,” author Elizabeth Field offers dozens of recipes for making various kinds of marmalades, as well as meals that incorporate the spreads and baked goods that can be a vehicle for them.

Field, who loathed marmalade as a child, became fascinated with it after meeting a marmalade maker while working as a food writer for a newspaper in western Massachusetts. Once she tasted the homemade stuff, she developed a “strange passion” for it, Field said by phone from her home in New York.

She started making marmalade and traveled throughout the United Kingdom and Europe to research its roots. She wrote her dissertation for a master's degree in gastronomy on the history of marmalade. Field loves the look, taste and texture of marmalade and how personal each batch is. She's drawn to its versatility and likes that it uses citrus peel, part of the fruit that normally goes to waste.

Among the marmalades in her book: bitter orange with rose water and almond, quince-raspberry, yuzu (a lemony-tasting citrus fruit from Japan), tomatillo-chile, passion fruit and red onion.

Aside from eating it with toast, marmalade can be used in sauces; slathered on sandwiches, burgers, grilled or roasted meat, fish and poultry; and paired with cheese.

“It's very versatile,” Field said.

Originating 2,000 years ago as a solid cooked quince and honey paste, marmalade is a fruit preserve usually made from the juice and peel of citrus fruits, boiled with sugar and water. Marmalades come in all stripes, from bright, fragrant, zesty varieties made from oranges, grapefruit, lemon and lime to savory spreads featuring onions, tomatoes, eggplant and bacon.

Non-citrus fruit and additional ingredients, including nuts and fresh herbs, can be used, too. Field has even made marmalade with liquids other than water, including Earl Grey tea.

Though related, marmalade, jam and jelly are different.

The majority of marmalades are made from citrus and include chunks of the fruit's flesh as well as its peel.

The peel adds a touch of pleasant bitterness to the mix and counterbalances sweetness, said food editor Karen Berner of Taste of Home magazine.

“Jelly is made from fruit juice, so it stays clear. It has a more gelatinous texture than jam and marmalade and pretty much holds it shape until you spread with a knife,” Berner said by email. “Jam is made from crushed or chopped fruit, which makes it a bit thicker but not necessarily chunky. It's softer than jelly and doesn't take much effort to spread.”

Several Omaha restaurants use marmalade in sauces, sandwiches and other menu items. A cheeseburger at Lot 2 Restaurant and Wine Bar at 62nd and Maple Streets features a layer of savory bacon-onion marmalade on the bun.

Jerico's Restaurant in west Omaha serves an orange marmalade dipping sauce with its coconut shrimp appetizer. The sauce starts with pre-made orange marmalade that the restaurant enhances with additional ingredients, including coconut liqueur.

The combination of sweet, savory and tangy flavors are a perfect complement to the sweetness of the coconut, said Fred Kurbis, Jerico's executive chef and general manager.

Beardslee, the Lincoln home cook, first discovered marmalade in college while reading James Michener's book “Iberia.” His descriptions of how Seville oranges grown in Spain are turned into marmalade in the U.K. intrigued her, prompting her to give it a try.

Marmalade, she said, always reminds her of her favorite aunt, a native of Great Britain, where it's as prevalent as ketchup is in America.

A longtime jam, fruit butter and jelly maker, Beardslee cooked her first batch of marmalade on a whim a few years ago.

“They had some nice-looking oranges at the store, and I thought I'd give it a shot,” she said.

Since then, she's made marmalade with many types of citrus and other fruits, including a bumper crop of homegrown pears this summer. One of her favorites is tangelo marmalade. The fruit, a cross between a grapefruit and tangerine, gives the spread a slightly sweet, slightly tart flavor.

Though many marmalade recipes call for pectin (sold in powdered form), cookbook author Field leaves it out, preferring to use natural ingredients. Citrus and other fruit contain ample amounts of the naturally occurring substance to produce a properly set marmalade, she said.

If you're unsure about the consistency, Field suggests the “wrinkle test.” Drop a spoonful of hot marmalade on a saucer, and put it in the freezer for a couple minutes. Take it out it and press your thumb in the marmalade. If the surface wrinkles, it's good to go.

If you're not getting the right set, let it boil a little longer.

“Keep stirring and cooking it and it will do it,” she said. “Fruit is always different. Sometimes it sets up in less time and sometimes more.”

Is this Omaha's most incredible Easter egg tree?
Omaha, Lincoln both set record lows; some fruit trees may have been damaged
Grand Island body shop owner models car after Coney dog
Archives: So many wonderful old Omaha photos
What to Watch: 'Fargo,' 'New Girl'
Aw, geez. 'Fargo' has a new psycho
'Last Supper' quilt makes its way to Nebraska
Caravan’s steampunk ‘Fantasticks’ to pitch its tent in Iowa
Cleveland Evans: Emma blossomed from medieval roots
Annie, I'm worried my fiancée will go back to her group sex ways
Number of stay-at-home moms on the rise, it’s not who you think
Assemble the minions! How to make weird but cool Easter crafts
Changes on World-Herald comics page
Annie, my 26-year-old son has no interest in getting a job
Kaneko-designed production to close Opera Omaha's 2014-15 season
Jazz composer, 20, dreams big after rediscovering music
Gay Men's Chorus bringing musical about bullying to Lincoln
Alegent Creighton Health gives churches the tools they need to develop healthy congregations
Pilgrimage to Italy meaningful to visitors
Former Grand Island church now home to Buddhist temple
School of Faith gives faculty a boost of religion
Project Interfaith’s interactive kits will get people talking
Kroc Center egg hunt adds splash of color to overcast Sunday
How an Omahan, like-minded pod people preserve corn diversity
Omaha Symphony: 'Vivaldi sound' familiar yet enthralling
< >
Cleveland Evans: From a moody nickname to the Ninja Turtles’ bestie
In honor of April 1, this column’s about Murgatroyd and Amphelisia.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
$25 for a $50 gift card to use at Schweser's!
Buy Now
Jump to a blog:
< >
We Love Weddings blog
W.E. Love Weddings is about everything Omaha and everything weddings by the editors of Wedding Essentials Magazine.
Weddings and engagements
Share your exciting news with your community by placing an announcement today.
Inspired Home Omaha magazine
Sign up today to get the latest edition of Omaha's best magazine for local living, home entertainment, fashion and travel!
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »