Are you a marmalade lover? Then we have to tell you that out of all the marmalades you can easily find in stores, we like Dundee best.
Perhaps it's the big thick white glass bottles that make great pen holders when you're done. Perhaps it's the Seville oranges that have a great history as having been created from bitter Spanish oranges that no one wanted to eat.** Perhaps it's the thick cut of the oranges themselves and the sticky, gooey consistency which you have to wrestle out of the jar. We like Dundee when it gets really dry, sugary and old. When in a pinch, a piece of whole wheat toast, butter and a thick slab of Dundee will set you straight.
**History from The Scots Independent:
" The start of the world famous Keiller's marmalade from Dundee began by chance in 1700. The story goes that a humble Dundee grocer, the young James Keiller, took advantage of a Spanish ship taking refuge from a winter storm in Dundee harbour carrying a large cargo of Seville oranges. These he bought in large quantity, very cheaply, but found that owing to their bitterness he was unable to sell them! His ingenious wife, Janet, not wishing to waste the fruit, used the oranges, instead of her normal quinces, to make some pots of preserve. They proved to be so popular that the Dundee public demanded more and the Keiller's from then on ensured a regular order for Seville oranges. Several generations later, in 1797, another Mrs Keiller and her son James finally felt confident enough to build the world's first marmalade factory."
Here's their recipe, white jar not included:
makes about 4lb
2 lb Seville or bitter oranges
4 pt water
4 lb preserving sugar
Wash the oranges and lemons and put, whole, into a large saucepan or preserving pan, add the water, and put the lid on. Bring to the boil and simmer for one and half hours so that you can easily pierce the fruit. When they are ready, take them out and leave them on a big dish to cool. With a sharp knife, slice them into the thickness you like, and remove any pips. Add these pips to the juice, boil for ten minutes, then strain. Add the sliced fruit to the juice and bring to the boil; then add the sugar. Stir over a gentle heat until it is disolved, then boil up rapidly, without stirring, for about half an hour, or until setting point (approximately 220° F.) is attained. A small spoonful put on to a cold saucer will 'wrinkle' up when the dish is tilted - if the marmalade is cooked enough. Pour into warmed jars, and cover at once.