This delicious orange marmalade has an additional zing that comes from including fresh ginger in the mix. Easy to make and excellent on toast, in yogurt or even on its own, this homemade orange-ginger marmalade is a wonderful twist on an old favorite.
True Confession: To be perfectly honest, I did not grow up being a fan of orange marmalade. As a child, I thought it was waaaay too bitter and intense and just…. no. That’s probably not uncommon, as most children don’t love bitter tastes, do they? But as much I love oranges and I love jam, I never really took to orange marmalade. Or marmalade in general. You know, any variety of citrus fruit that is made into jam… whether it be bitter orange (or Seville oranges as they are also known; the most commonly used), lemon, orange, mandarin, grapefruit, limes, kumquats and so forth.
Although way back in time, the original was made with quince… before the commonly known orange marmalade became popular.
Fast forward several decades, (in my life, not in the history of marmalade!) and as often happens, my tastes have certainly changed. Somewhere along the line, my ‘definite no’ stance on orange marmalade shifted to a “well, maybe, in a pinch” to “hmmm… that orange marmalade on the buffet table looks pretty good!” And though I often make jams and jellies of various fruity flavors, I never, ever considered making orange marmalade.
Then, one day I had a single huge beautiful orange on my hands. I also happened to have a large knob of fresh ginger in the kitchen and the creative wheels got turning. So, I decided to take the leap and try making my own version of orange marmalade. It took a few tries, but I finally got it right.
Let’s Make Some Orange Ginger Marmalade
This recipe is for a very small batch of orange-ginger marmalade, although if you like to do things in a big way, you can certainly double or triple the recipe or even make a huge pot of it! But regardless, the first thing you’re going to do is procure beautiful oranges that are hopefully organic and unblemished.
That’s because you’re going to be using the peel as well as the pulp and juice of the orange(s). And if your fruit is not organic, you really should be aware that the skin contains an abundance of the chemical pesticide residues that remain.
Moving along, you’ll start by slicing off the peel of the entire orange. Some marmalade recipes call for using the whole orange, including the white pith and all of the internal dividing membranes, but I tried that and it was way too bitter, for my tastes anyway. So, as you can see in the photo, I’ve tried to allow just a little of the white pith, but not much.
You’re then going to slice the peel into tiny micro-slivers, and set aside. There might be a special kitchen tool for this, but if there is, I don’t know about it. So, I opted to do it the old fashioned way… all you need is a sharp knife and some patience. I just get into that “Zen space” I sometimes mention, where time doesn’t matter and my attention is simply focused on the work in front of me. Time seems to pass quickly that way… but it’s well worth the time, because the little slivers look beautiful in the marmalade.
Next up is the ginger, the spicier the better! If your fresh ginger is too mild, you won’t really taste much difference in the final product. So, hold out for when you have a nice spicy piece of fresh ginger on hand. For this recipe, I’ve found works well if the ginger is minced. You’ll use a lot less ginger than orange peel, so it goes a lot faster than slicing the peel!
Then take the remaining orange and remove the thick white pith and the center “spine” and gently separate the sections of fruit, which you will put into a heavy-bottomed pot that is large enough to contain at least 2 cups of water, sugar and the fruit. I include some of the fruit sections’ membranes, but not if they are too tough and firm. Don’t allow any of the resulting juicy mess to get away from you because you’ll want all of the juice to go into the pot with the fruit. (there doesn’t seem to be any way to make the process of separating and cutting the orange pulp neat and tidy!)
So, all of the remaining ingredients go into the pot and you’ll boil it on high heat for about 15 minutes, stirring every so often. After the juice and sugar begin to thicken a little, reduce the heat to avoid scorching on the bottom. You’ll continue to stir occasionally, until the syrup has formed and the peel and ginger have softened and melded together.
You can test for readiness by dropping a small dot of the marmalade onto a chilled plate to see if it firms up or is too runny. You definitely want to stop the process before all of the liquid has evaporated or you won’t have any of that delicious thick syrup that makes any jam or marmalade particularly scrumptious.
If you are a fan of orange marmalade, you’re going to love this recipe! And if you are like I was, and you’re not a fan… or if you’re on the fence… then I’m pretty sure that just one taste of this amazingly irresistible orange-ginger marmalade could pop you right over into the marmalade lover’s camp! I do hope that you give it a try…
Thank you for reading! If this post has piqued your interest… or if you find it useful, inspiring or otherwise magical, please pin it and share it… And we’re always happy to hear from you via the Contact page.
Irresistible Orange Ginger Marmalade
- 1 large orange (yielding approximately ⅓-½ cup orange peel
- 1 TBSP minced fresh ginger more, if you want it extra spicy 🙂
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons turbinado or light brown sugar
- 2 cups water more as needed
- Peel your large orange, making sure that only a bit of the white pith is included in the peel slices.
- Slice the pieces of orange peel into very tiny, thin strips, no more than ½ inch long.
- Mince the fresh ginger.
- Place the ginger and orange peel into a heavy bottomed pot that is large enough for 2+ cups of liquid.
- Cut the peeled orange into sections, removing and discarding the center "spine" area and any thick skins. Be sure to collect all of the orange juice as you cut the orange and add that to the cooking pot.
- Add the sliced orange and the sugars to the pot and boil on the stove top on high heat, stirring occasionally, until the juice starts to thicken.
- Don't over boil the marmalade. As the marmalade thickens, reduce heat to avoid scorching.
- You can add more water as needed, checking for thickness as you go, by setting a small drop of the marmalade on a ceramic plate to see how it sets up.
- Be sure to remove the pot from heat when the syrup is thickened but will still drop from a spoon (just a bit more flowing than honey) and before all of the syrup has evaporated!
- Before marmalade has cooled, decant into a clean glass jar and store the marmalade in the refrigerator.