Easy Fresh Pumpkin Orange Marmalade Recipe

Marmelade à la citrouille et à l’orange

Here’s a lovely recipe for a fresh pumpkin preserve you can make on one of those weekends when all you want to do is putter around the kitchen with a glass of wine and your favorite playlist. It’s easy, relaxing and the end result is so satisfying.

If you’ve never tried fresh fruit preserves before, this recipe will get you hooked. These preserves aren’t meant to go into the pantry and last through the apocalypse. They don’t have that cooked down flavor. They are bright, fresh and meant to go straight into the fridge and be eaten up within a month or two. 

The flavor and color will win you over. So will the simplicity. I love this pumpkin marmalade’s sheer star power on a cheese plate — a pure shot of vivid orange. The taste is both bright and earthy. And it’s versatile enough to spread on toast or garnish a slice of cheesecake. 

This recipe makes one medium jar or two smaller jars — approximately 1.5 – 2 cups.

INGREDIENTS

2 pounds sugar pumpkin, split, seeds removed, and cut into 4 inch cubes
1 small orange: slice half the orange as thinly as possible, seeds removed
1 tablespoon lemon juice 
1 1/3 cups sugar
pinch of salt
cloves
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped out (or vanilla paste)

MAKE IT

Steam the pumpkin in a steamer basket inside a pot until cooked through, about 30 minutes. When a knife easily goes through the pumpkin, you’ll know it’s done. Make sure to watch the water level while steaming, as you may need to add more. Be sure to keep the water level just below the steamer basket.

While the pumpkin is steaming, wash the orange thoroughly, and slice half the orange as thinly as possible. Cut these slices into quarters. Squeeze lemon and set aside the juice.

When the pumpkin is cool enough to handle, remove the flesh from the skin and puree it in a food processor, pass it through a food mill or mash it by hand. It’s okay (to my taste, preferable) to have some small chunks remaining.

Put the pumpkin, sugar, salt, lemon juice and orange slices in a heavy-duty saucepan. Add vanilla seeds and bean to the pot (or vanilla paste).

Cook over medium heat, stirring continuously until sugar is completely dissolved. Be sure to keep stirring to prevent the mixture from burning. Continue cooking until the mixture is thick and has the consistency of jam or a preserve. It should be thick and jelly-like, not runny. You really will be able to tell by checking the texture. It should take 10-15 minutes.

Place a clove in the bottom of each of clean, dry jar, then fill with the pumpkin marmalade. Close the jar lids tight and turn over to let them sit upside down to cool. When completely cool, store them in the fridge for up to 2 months. 

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NOTES

    • Use a proper baking pumpkin. They are called pie pumpkins or sugar pumpkins. They are sweeter, more flavorful, darker orange and their flesh is more dense and less stringy than a regular pumpkin.
    • Some people love the orange rind and some like it less. Adding the slices creates an orange-pumpkin marmalade. If you prefer a pumpkin forward marmalade with a hint of orange, either omit the orange slices entirely and just substitute a tablespoon of orange juice — or add fewer orange slices.

how to make pumpkin orange jam

  • Get the most uniform, thin orange slices using a mandolin slicer. (check prices)
  • This recipe is for a small batch because I like to eat this fresh and it doesn’t tend to hang around a long time once I make it. It’s delicious, versatile and so easy to make, so just make a small batch at a time and enjoy it.
  • You turn the jar upside down while it’s cooling to make a better seal. You then turn it right side up to store it in the fridge. You don’t absolutely have to do this step, especially if you are going to be eating this up quickly. If you don’t want to do this step, then just close the jars and let them cool on the counter normally before storing in the fridge.
  • Stir. Do not be lazy or look away or check your phone or get distracted! You need to use a heavy saucepan, keep an eye on the pot and stir frequently to keep it from burning. Once it starts scorching, you cannot recover it.
  • Don’t want it spicy? Omit the clove.

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