Costa Blanca News (South Edition) - - Wine And Dine -

Although many deem it to be a quintessen­tially Bri­tish pre­serve, mar­malade was im­ported into Britain from the Ibe­rian Pen­nisula many cen­turies ago.

The name orig­i­nates from Por­tu­gal, where marme­lada ap­plies ex­clu­sively to quince jam.

There are just three in­gre­di­ents that go into it – Seville or­anges, wa­ter and sugar.

In the 16th cen­tury, the bit­ter rind from or­anges was cooked un­til soft, then pre­served in sugar and by the 17th cen­tury, it be­came a much looser jelly with pieces of fruit, re­sem­bling the clas­sic mar­malade which we rec­og­nize now.

In 1797 the first com­mer­cial mar­malade fac­tory opened in Dundee – Keiller’s, named af­ter its cre­ator Janet Keiller but then ac­quired by Crosse & Black­well and now part of Robert­son’s, an­other com­pany of Scot­tish ori­gin. This knob­bly, odd shaped root veg­etable has a sub­tle cel­ery-like flavour with nutty over­tones and orig­i­nated in the Mediter­ranean Basin and North­ern Eu­rope although now grown across many con­ti­nents.

It is avail­able all year round but best through­out the win­ter months.

Cele­riac needs to be peeled prior to eat­ing or cook­ing – it tends to ox­i­dise and turn brown as soon as its been cut, so to keep the flesh white sub­merge if a bowl of cold wa­ter with a squeeze of le­mon – much like ap­ples. It can be added be eaten raw in sal­ads or cooked – boiled or roasted and made into a tasty mash.

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