This week I have been making onion marmalade, special request from my daughter. I adapted a recipe from the River Cottage Handbook No 2 – Preserves by Pam Corbin at the suggestion of @flashmaggie. The power of twitter, no sooner had I suggested that I was looking for a recipe than two came back from different sources. Marmalade in this context is to do with slow cooking, the process takes time but is not technically difficult and if you go out smelling of onions and hot vinegar well, there are worse things in life.
My adaptations were to use red onions, Billington’s caster sugar and Suffolk Mud cranberry sauce rather than Demerara and red currant jelly. I prefer to use what I have in the cupboards already. When the onions become soft and slowly darken a pyroclastic flow starts to develop as you drive out the moisture. As the sugar and later the vinegar is added this becomes more volcanic in nature popping and splashing hot vinegary spray and steam. The only solution is to keep stirring; I am perfecting the art of stirring with one hand whilst scrolling through twitter with the iphone in the other.
Must have kitchen gadgets in this process are a mandolin, heavy bottomed pan and a jam funnel. Ohh, and a plea, could it be made compulsory that all jam and pickle manufacturers put peelable or at the very least soakable labels on their jars. I like to re-use where ever possible and am fed up of having to scrub stickiness from jam pots.
I have given away two pots of the marmalade in the hope of some feedback and I will try out the other recipe once this is all used up. Better post this soon; the power is going on and off like a stripper’s robe here this morning.