Aperol & Red Grapefruit Marmalade


The first in our trio of lip-smacking marmalades, aperol and red grapefruit.

A boozy soft-set with a gorgeous bitter orangey note from the aperol.

Without further ado and with a great video on sterilising jars from BBC Good Food….

2½ hrs | makes 8 x 250g jars | a little effort

Tip: Remember 1kg fruit to 1kg jam sugar as a baseline for marmalade making and you’ll not go wrong. When it comes to marmalade it’s important to follow the instructions exactly. 105°C is the magic temperature.


1kg red grapefruit – roughly 3 grapefruits 
1 lemon
1.3kg jam sugar 

60ml aperol
8 x 250g jars, sterilised – with about 20mins cooking time to go
muslin and kitchen string
your second largest pan with lid (if making all 3 marmalades in one day)
a digital thermometer is very handy if you have one


Stage 1. Peel the grapefruit zests with a peeler and cut into thin shreds. Juice the grapefruits and the lemon and strain the juice into a large pan, retaining the flesh and pips. Cut the empty fruit shells in half, then peel away the squeezed-out flesh from the pith. Discard the pith, and put the fleshy membrane along with the flesh and pips strained out of the juice, into a piece of muslin. Gather up the corners and tie up with kitchen string. Add this to the pan along with the shredded zest and 1.25 litres of water.

Bring to the boil, then turn down to a simmer, put on the lid and cook for 1 hour, or until the zest is soft.

Tip: Put a small plate in the freezer to get cold. A good test for when the marmalade is ready is to drop a small amount onto the plate and if it wrinkles when you press your finger into it it’s ready. If it doesn’t, keep going!

Stage 2. Remove the muslin bag from the liquid, put in a sieve over the pan. Once it’s cool enough to handle with marigolds, squeeze as much juice as you can into the pan.

Add the sugar to the pan and cook over a fairly low heat until the sugar is dissolved, giving it the odd stir. Once dissolved, bring to the boil and bubble until it reaches a temperature of 105°C and/or the cold plate test wrinkles up.

You’ll find if using a thermometer, that above 100°C the temperature rises by 0.5°C at a time and often decreases again on it’s way up to 105°C and it takes a while. I like to let it reach 105.5°C before proceeding.

Let the mixture cool for 10 minutes, then stir in the Aperol. Divide between sterilised jars and seal.


From Olive Magazine December 2017.

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