Damson Marmalade. Recipe
Damson Marmalade Recipe
Marmalade is a delightful spread made from citrus fruits. However, there is a lesser-known variety that is equally delicious and deserves more recognition - Damson Marmalade. Damsons are small, tart plums that are perfect for creating a unique and flavorful marmalade. In this recipe, we will explore the process of making Damson Marmalade, a sweet and tangy preserve that is sure to bring a burst of flavor to your breakfast table.
History and Fun Facts:
Marmalade has a long and fascinating history. The concept of preserving fruit in sugar syrup dates back to ancient times, with the Romans being the first to use honey as a sweetener. The word "marmalade" itself has its roots in Portuguese and is derived from the word "marmelo," meaning quince.
Damson Marmalade is made in a similar manner to quince and apricot marmalade. Both quince and apricot marmalades are known for their fine textures and exquisite tastes. Interestingly, to enhance the flavor profile of Damson Marmalade, some of the damson kernels are added to the fruit during the cooking process. These kernels, once peeled and blanched, provide a delightful almond-like flavor to the marmalade.
Now, let's explore the step-by-step process of making Damson Marmalade.
- 2 pounds (900g) fresh damsons
- 5 cups (1.2L) water
- 4 cups (800g) granulated sugar
- Juice of 2 lemons
1. Wash the damsons thoroughly and remove any stems or leaves. Make sure to discard any damaged or rotten fruit.
2. Place the damsons in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add water and bring to a gentle boil. Cook the damsons over medium heat for about 15-20 minutes until they become soft and tender.
3. Once the damsons are cooked, remove the saucepan from the heat and allow them to cool slightly. Then pass the fruit through a clean sieve to separate the pulp from the skins and stones. Press the pulp against the sieve using the back of a spoon to extract as much fruit as possible. Set aside the extracted pulp.
4. Take the damson stones and carefully peel away their skin. Place the peeled stones back into the saucepan with the extracted pulp.
Note: Peeling the stones can be a time-consuming process, but it adds a unique flavor to the marmalade. If you prefer, you can skip this step, although the resulting marmalade may have a slightly different taste.
5. Once all the stones are peeled and added to the saucepan, return the mixture to the heat. Add lemon juice and sugar to the saucepan, stirring well to combine.
6. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for approximately 1 hour until the marmalade thickens and reaches the desired consistency. Stir occasionally to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
7. While the marmalade is simmering, sterilize your jars by placing them in a large pot of boiling water for a few minutes. Remove them from the water and leave them to air dry.
8. Once the marmalade has thickened, turn off the heat and allow it to cool for a few minutes. Carefully ladle the hot marmalade into the sterilized jars, leaving a little space at the top. Seal the jars tightly.
9. Store the jars of Damson Marmalade in a cool, dark place for at least a week before consuming. This allows the flavors to meld together and develop.
10. Enjoy your homemade Damson Marmalade on toast, scones, or as a sweet addition to your favorite recipes.
Similar Recipe Dishes:
If you enjoy the flavors of Damson Marmalade, you may also appreciate other fruit-based preserves. Quince and apricot marmalades, mentioned earlier, are similarly prepared and boast their own unique tastes. Strawberry jam, raspberry jam, and blackcurrant jelly are also delightful options that add a burst of fruity goodness to your meals. Experiment with different fruits and combinations to create your perfect preserve.
Damson Marmalade is a hidden gem amongst the world of marmalades. The tartness of the damsons and the almond-like flavor from the peeled kernels create a truly unique and delightful spread. By following this recipe, you can savor the joy of homemade Damson Marmalade and discover a new favorite to add to your breakfast table.