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I Love January

January 2, 2015

Fresh Start and Fresh Fruit

I love January.  love a fresh start.  I love leaving behind the stuff that no longer serves me well and planning the year ahead.  I love organizing and goal setting.  I love swapping cookies for carrot sticks and getting back to an exercise routine.  But most of all, I love January because of the HoneyBells!  They are a cross between a grapefruit and a tangerine, easy to peel, and incredibly juicy.  they have a short season and this is their moment.  Great for eating, juicing, marmalade, salads or salsa.  So if you have a tree go out and pick 'em, and if you don't, then order them online from Harvey's Groves. But by all means get yourself some HoneyBells!

 
Honeybell Marmalade

Makes 3 half-pints

 

Honeybells are super sweet, and give you the opportunity to reduce the usual one to one, sugar to pulp ratio in most citrus marmalades.   Also, Honeybell peels are loaded with pectin and actually have enough to properly jell the marmalade even when you use 1/3 less sugar than usual.  You will love this recipe:  

 

5 to 6 Honeybell tangelos (for 3 cups Honeybell pulp)
1 scant cup Honeybell rind, cut into matchsticks
1 cup water
2 cups sugar

 

 

Remove the peel. With a sharp paring knife, remove the white pith from the inside of the peel. It’s okay if you don’t get it all. Cut the peel into thin matchsticks. Place in a small pot with the water and boil gently over a medium low heat until the peel is tender, about 10 minutes. Set aside. Do not drain.

Cut any white pith off the orange. Cut the Honeybells in half and remove the seeds. Place the Honeybells in a food processor and pulse to grind. Pour the pulp into a bowl, add the peel and water and refrigerate for a few hours. Up to over night is fine.

 

Pour the pulp, peel and water into a deep, wide heavy bottomed pot. Add the sugar and bring to a boil over a medium high heat, stirring occasionally. Watch to be sure the marmalade doesn’t foam up (you can add about a teaspoon of butter if it does, which will help settle down the foam). Boil at a moderately high boil for twenty minutes. The marmalade will look runny. It’s okay. Do a gel test: place a small amount of marmalade in a spoon in the refrigerator fro about 5 minutes. If it stiffens up the marmalade is ready.

 

Sterilize 3 half-pint jars and bands. Simmer new lids in hot water for a few minutes to soften the rubberized flange.  Spoon the marmalade into the jars leaving ½ inch headroom. Wipe the rims, place on the lids and screw on the bands fingertip tight.  Place in a pot with a rack and cover with two to three inches of water. Bring to a boil and boil for 10 minutes. Remove the jars and place on a rack or cloth towel and allow to cool. Check the seal and store in a cool dark place for up to a year. Refrigerate after opening.

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