zucchini marmalade

so the main reason i wanted to participate in this year-long canning challenge was to learn a few things not only about canning, jamming, pickling, etc. but also about the personality and behavior of the actors (aka produce) going into the jars. i have gardened for about fifteen years and some of these plant genera are still foreign to me. for instance, i had never heard the term ‘cucurbits’ in my life, although most in this family of plants are very familiar to me and i’m sure to you as well: summer and winter squash, cucumbers, gourds, and a whole mess of melons. this month’s challenge was to get one of these preserved in jars.

i knew immediately what i needed to do when this category was announced: correct that bad feeling i had when i made cucumber pickles last year. they were disgusting. i swore that i would remedy that when the opportunity arose the following summer. but when i went to the market looking for pickling cucumbers, wouldn’t you know it, there were none to be found. so in the meantime, my dearest friend, kathy, gifted me with what she referred to as a ‘steroidal zucchini’ from a garden she had been caring for earlier in the day (along with almost 10 pounds of figs–i know i choose my company well). she wasn’t kidding–look at this thing! it’s not the type of zucchini that tastes good in just a simple saute. this motha needed to be baked in a bread or….made into zucchini marmalade! ever since i came across the idea of making marmalade out of zucchini, i have been intrigued. the resulting concoction is a bright, sunny citrus spread with, yes the color of zucchini flecks but also the nutritional whallop of the squash. i used a full two-thirds of this in the double-batch i prepared using the recipe below. i feel healthier already.

zucchini marmalade (4 half pints)

adapted from dinner with julie and ball complete book of home preserving

2 lemons

1 large orange

1 medium-large zucchini (about 2 cups grated on large holes of a box grater)

2 cups water

4 cups sugar

wash lemons and orange well and grate using the largest holes on a box grater. place in a large pot or preserving pan with the water. peel some of the white pith from the lemons into large pieces and place in in the same pan (you will be removing these later, so size matters as you will have to fish them out).  simmer for about 30 minutes.

meanwhile, finely chop the flesh of the lemons and oranges (after removing any remaining pith and all seeds). remove the pith from the pot and add in the lemon and orange flesh and the grated zucchini. bring back up to a simmer and allow to slowly cook for about 20 more minutes. add in sugar and bring to a boil, taking care to monitor that the mixture doesn’t foam up and boil over. boil gently, stirring often so it doesn’t stick to the pan, about 30 minutes. check temp with a candy thermometer or, my preferred method is the wrinkle test to test for gel set.

ladle into prepared jars and  process in a water bath for 10 minutes.

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11 Comments

Filed under condiment, fruit

11 responses to “zucchini marmalade

  1. I love the photo of the hoisted (sp?) zucchini.

    And can I just tell you, Texas gardener? My zucchini are just now beginning to produce here in Portland. Tiny baby zucchinis still, not like the baseball bat in your photo.

  2. Does the zucchini add body to the marmalade? I bet it takes on the citrus flavors nicely, and I like the green flecks in the jars!

  3. Gotdam, that thing is f-normous! I love the idea of zucchini marmalade… would it be too sweet to have with steamed fish?

    • thecosmiccowgirl

      prolly too sweet, rachel. but you could cut back on the sugar significantly or just use a little honey and you don’t have to can it–just pop it in the fridge!

  4. This looks a very pretty preserve I will give it a try when my summer squashes start to overtake the garden, soon, soon…

  5. Woah! That sure is one epic Texas zuke! I remember those (specifically, wondering what to do with them)! And the 10 pounds of figs? What was their fate?….Something very special I’m sure.

  6. You’re right – that is one mutha of a zuke! You could really hurt someone with that thing – maybe you should have kept it around for self-defense? Seriously, though, that’s a beautiful marmalade. I may even bite the bullet and grow zukes in the garden this time around.

  7. Pingback: Please–No More Zucchini! « Grits and Purls

  8. Pingback: My Own CanJam Cucurbit Roundup | Grow & Resist

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