Monthly Archives: January 2021

Meyer Lemon Marmalade

Have you tried Meyer Lemons?  They are a little bit sweeter than the regular lemons available at your local grocery stores.  Meyer lemons are thought to be a cross between a traditional lemon and a mandarin orange.  The Meyer lemon has a smooth yellow skin and is not too tart or too sweet.

An interesting fact about the Meyer lemon is that it was named after a US Department of Agriculture employee named Frank N. Meyer.  Mr. Meyer was an Agricultural Explorer who collected a sample of the plant on a trip to China in 1908.

I find the Meyer Lemons at two of my local grocery stores, usually in January and February.

This Meyer Lemon Marmalade is a freezer type marmalade, and it also includes navel oranges in the recipe.  It sets up exceptionally well and has a bright citrus flavor.  It may now be my favorite topping for an English Muffin.

Meyer Lemon Marmalade

  • Difficulty: easy
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5 medium Meyer lemons
2 medium navel oranges
4 1/4 cups granulated sugar

3/4 cup water
1 (1.75 ounce) box Sure-Jell Fruit Pectin

Wash 5 (8 ounce) glass jars and lids with hot water or run through the dishwasher.  Dry thoroughly and set aside.

Wash and dry the lemons and oranges.  Remove the colored part of the peel from the fruit, using a small zester or vegetable peeler.  Cut the peel into thin slivers, or finely chop.  Transfer to a large bowl.

Peel and discard remaining white part of the peel from the lemons and oranges.

Coarsely chop the fruit into small pieces, discarding any seeds and the white core and reserving any juice.  Transfer the fruit and juice to the bowl with the zest.  Stir to combine.

Transfer 2 1/3 cups of the fruit mixture to a large pot.  (If you don’t have enough, add a bit of water or orange juice to make exactly 2 1/3 cups).  If there is extra, discard it.

Add the sugar and stir until well combined.  Turn the heat to medium-high and stir frequently until the mixture comes to a full rolling boil.  Boil for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.  After 30 seconds, remove from the heat and set aside.

Add 3/4 cup water to a small saucepan.  Sprinkle in the Sure-Jell and stir until dissolved.  Bring the mixture to a rolling boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Add the hot sure jell mixture to the fruit mixture and stir for 3 minutes.

Transfer the marmalade to the prepared containers immediately and fill to within 1/2  inch of tops.  Wipe off top edges of containers and immediately cover with lids.  Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours.  Marmalade is now ready to use.

Store in refrigerator up to 3 weeks or freeze containers up to 1 year.  Thaw in the refrigerator before using.  Makes about five (8 ounce) jars of marmalade.  

Adapted from a Kraft Heinz recipe.

Be safe everyone.

Blue Jays often come by my back yard looking for treats.  They are especially fond of peanuts.

Easy Coconut Cake

I like to call this Coconut Cake my snow day cake.  I usually make it every year after we get a lot of snow.  It matches the landscape outside.  It is a very easy cake to make.  I use a box cake mix and Betty Crocker Home Style Fluffy White Frosting Mix.  The frosting mix is like a 7 minute frosting.

Coconut Cake is a popular dessert in the Southern region of the USA.  It is usually frosted with a 7 Minute type fluffy frosting and covered with coconut flakes.  A cream cheese frosting or a simple butter cream frosting can be used also.  When I lived in the South, this was always a favorite cake that I liked to make for special occasions (no snow required).

But here in Grand Rapids, we did have a snow storm and it seemed like a good day to make the cake.

Years ago, the Betty Crocker Home Style Fluffy White Frosting Mix was easy to find in local grocery stores.  Now, I have to order online from Walmart (pickup not available). The price is $3.48 per box.  Walmart does have a minimum order amount of $35 for free delivery.  It is also available on Amazon at a higher price.

The mix really does make a fluffy, light, and delicious frosting.  It is so much easier than making a 7 Minute frosting from scratch.

Easy Coconut Cake

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

For the Cake

1 (15.25 oz) box Classic White Cake Mix, Duncan Hines (or your favorite mix)
1 cup water
3 large egg white
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Frosting

1 (7.2 oz size) Betty Crocker Home Style Fluffy White Frosting Mix
1/2 cup boiling water

1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut

For the Cake

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Spray  bottom and sides of 2 (8 inch) round cake pans with Cooking Spray and line with parchment paper.  Set pans aside.

Blend the cake mix, water, oil and egg whites and vanilla extract  in a large bowl with mixer.  Beat on low speed for 30 seconds to combine the ingredients.  Scrape down the bowl and continue beating on medium speed for 2 minutes.  Pour the batter into the prepared pans.  Bake for 26-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool cakes on wire racks for 15 minutes.  Remove cakes from pans, peel off parchment paper, and discard.  Cool cakes completely before frosting.

For the Frosting

Beat frosting mix and 1/2 cup boiling water in small glass or metal bowl on low speed 30 seconds, scraping the bowl constantly.  Beat on high speed 5 to 7 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally, until stiff peaks form.

When the cake layers are cool, place 1 layer on a flat serving plate and spread with a small amount of the frosting.  Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the coconut.  Place the second cake layer on top. Frost the top and sides of the cake with the frosting.  Sprinkle the top with coconut and lightly press more coconut onto the sides.

Cake is best served the day it is made.  Any leftovers should be stored in refrigerator.   

Snowman and picture are courtesy of a family member.

Wishing everyone a happy and safe New Year.

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