Making Marmalade

On the road…again!
Afghanistan to Zambia
Chronicles of a Footloose Forester
By Dick Pellek


Making Marmalade


At three o’clock the Bengal Tiger noticed that the wild grapes in the vacant lot next door were fully ripe and ready for harvest.  By four o’clock, or maybe 4:15, those grapes were picked, washed, cooked, strained and ready to become wild grape jelly or marmalade. A small amount of sugar was added to taste. Except that the Bengal Tiger was not going to be satisfied with plain grape jelly or marmalade, even if she made it herself.  Enter the secret ingredients, ala Thu.  And she decided what it was going to become.

First came the orange peels, properly scraped and shredded for the grainy texture of her grape marmalade.  Indeed, it was the first time she had made either grape jelly or marmalade; but it was also the first opportunity she had to use the wild grapes next to the house in one of her experimental recipes.


The Grape Jelly/ Marmalade Maker
a.k.a. The Bengal Tiger

In just a few minutes the shredded orange peel and its juices were blended into the thickened jelly matrix.  Finally, she added a secret ingredient that she kept in the spice cupboard—seaweed. It was a pale yellow variety of seaweed that her Mom had herself harvested in the waters off Oahu and sent in a package for her daughter, years ago.  Now was the time to put a few gelatinized clumps of the seaweed into the mix to thicken the ingredients into a jelly.  The finished product was a grape jelly/marmalade that was indistinguishable from other grape jellies except for the distinct flavor of orange.  Grape Jelly Marmalade!  And it lasted more than two years.

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