Tuesday, January 25, 2011
There's marmalade in the air. One of my neighbours made it a couple of weeks back. Felicity Claoke has recently featured her perfect version at WoM, so is it any wonder that I got tempted too?
The small oranges featured here are rare to come by. About one and half inch intense orange globes, I always fall for them and get a bagful. They are seedless so generally I use them in Chicken with orange, a dish where I can add the pieces with the minimum fuss. They also have very thin peel so instead of going through the procedure of extracting the zest from the peel, I can use it directly to make my home-made orange liquer. My marmalade is not thick. I am not even sure I can call it a marmalade since the whole orange except its peel is kept as it. Perhaps I should call them poached oranges! In a glass bottle, with all the orange globes on top of each other it looks enchanting. I have used the whole ranges in a dessert which follows below. The syrup is fantastic on plain old fashioned Victoria sponge cake. I am sure it would go very well with other types too, say Walnut coffee cake!
9 small oranges
1 lemon, juiced
2 cups water
1 cup sugar
1 cup Muscat wine (any white wine should do)
Preheat the oven to 150 degree centigrade. In a oven proof bowl place the oranges. Top with water so as to submerge them. Cover the container making sure all the oranges are submerged. Roast for 1 and half hours. Fish out the oranges and cool them. Strain the orangish liquid and boil it with the shredded peel. Julienne the peel from 4 oranges, once the oranges have cooled, into 1 mm thick shred. Boil for about 15 minutes before adding the sugar. Takes about another half hour for it to be sticky. Add the wine, lemon juice and reduce it to two-third the volume. It should become moderately sticky again. Cool completely. In the meantime remove the white stringy bits, taking care to keep the oranges intact. Arrange the oranges in a sterile glass bottle. Pour the syrup on it. Make sure all the peel goes in too. If the oranges are not yet submerged, top it with some wine.
I used some of the poached oranges the next day in dumplings.
They were both sweet and savoury, the dough being made for the Rajasthani Batis that I had for dinner that day. But the tartness of the oranges were the right foil for the rich dough. Bati is the standard dough bread in Rajasthan and much of Gujarat. Filled Batis are all the rage in fancy places though the homely version is almost never stuffed. These are a sweet version. I am including the measures as I made them.
Orange stuffed Bati
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup semolina
1 teaspoon salt
1 and half teaspoon baking powder
5 tablespoon ghee
4 tablespoon curd
6 tablespoon water
12 poached oranges
Preheat oven to 180 degree centigrade. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk the curd and water. Make an indentation in the dry mixture and add the ghee. Add part of the curd and start bringing together the dry ingredients. Add curd as you go. The mixture should not be dry. Kneed for about 8 minutes, until a elastic, smooth dough is formed. Rest the dough for an hour. Make lemon sized balls from it. You will get about 12 balls.
Roll out the dough balls into a flat circle about half centimetre thick. Drain the poached oranges from the syrup and place it at the centre of the flattened dough. Bring the sides together and seal it. Roll it between two palms to get a perfectly round ball. Scallop one side of the ball with a spoon to make a design. Place on oiled plate and into the oven. Bake for about half an hour or until they are brown. Allow them to cool to room temperature before serving. The caramelised sugar could otherwise burn you!