Savory Sweet by Beth Dooley and Mette Nielson (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) offers low-tech, simple, and fast ways to preserve food. This recipe for marmalade uses carrots, lemon, ginger, and cardamom.
Storage carrots, a variety that sweetens after being stored, are released around the holidays. They’re especially good in this fragrant marmalade.
A nice balance of tangy and sweet, this marmalade is delicious on thickly sliced pumpernickel with very sharp cheddar cheese. Serve it alongside chicken or lamb curry. Spoon it over a ricotta tart and sprinkle on chopped fresh parsley or basil for an elegant first course or a light meal.
• 1/2 pound lemons
• 1 pound carrots, peeled
• 2 cups water
• 3/4 cup sugar
• 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
• 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1. Scrub the lemons well under running water, and remove the hard blossom ends and any blemishes on the skin. Cut the fruit in half lengthwise, and place it cut side down on a cutting board. Slice the lemon halves into very thin slices, discarding the seeds; you should have about 2 cups.
2. Using either a box grater or a food processor, coarsely grate the carrots. You should have about 3 1/2 loosely packed cups of grated carrots.
3. Put the lemons, carrots, and water into a 10-inch sauté pan. Cover the pan, and let it sit at room temperature, out of direct sunlight, for at least 8 to 24 hours to soften the lemon peel.
4. Put a small plate in the freezer for the set test. Stir the sugar, ginger, and cardamom into the carrot mixture. Set the pan over medium heat, and bring it to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 45 to 50 minutes. The marmalade should be sticky and slightly thickened. Remove the pan from the heat and do a set test. If the marmalade isn’t thick enough, return the pan to the heat for a few minutes, and then repeat the test.
5. Wash the jars, lids, and bands in very hot soapy water, rinse them well, and place them upside down on a clean towel to drain.
6. Spoon the marmalade into the jars, leaving a half inch of headroom to allow for expansion during freezing. Wipe the rims with a clean wet cloth or paper towel, add the lids and bands, and finger tighten the bands.
7. Label the jars. Cool completely and tighten the bands before storing the jars in the refrigerator or freezer.
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Reprinted with permission from Savory Sweet by Beth Dooley and Mette Nielson and published by University of Minnesota Press © 2017.