Preservation Society: Marmalade WorkshopPosted By Jennifer Ho Mar 08 2012 · 0 comments · Events
Word about the Preservation Society and the fantastic little workshops they hold came to our knowledge through Michelle Marek and Seth Gabrielse of FoodLab when we interviewed them last month for SNAP! Magazine (*Watch out for our piece in the upcoming issue and the video online!). Michelle gushed (as much as you can imagine her “gushing”) about Camilla’s workshops, describing the sessions as fun while being informative at the same time. Fun and informative they were.
We showed up on a wintry January evening ready to immerse ourselves in the art of marmalade. Unsure of what to expect, we were thinking we would get very hands on and actually make our own. The night started with some light, friendly conversation amongst an eclectic group of participants as we all waited for the last few people to trickle in. We were actually third last to make it into Le Vieux Velo and we showed up right on time. If you’re going, I would suggest arriving a couple minutes early to get a good spot and pick the choicest piece of cake! As we sat down around the long wooden table, we were invited to have some hot tea (your choice from a varied selection of tea bags) and a piece of home-made grapefruit/orange cake. Such a nice touch! Made everyone feel right at home. The cozy warmth of the place helped too – a welcome reprieve from the frosty wind outside.
Beginning a few minutes after eight, we gathered around to listen to Camilla tell us about the history of marmalade. She read from one of her favourite books on the subject, quoting several times and sharing a couple of humorous anecdotes. I won’t give anything away, so overall, I’ll say it was most definitely enlightening. Marmalade is not something you hear about that often and personally I have to say I don’t know much about it at all! So this for me was a really interesting discussion about how marmalade is made, the best methods and techniques, what to do and what not to do, where to buy the best fruits and what kinds to look for etc. Towards the end of the evening, we were shown different methods in cutting the fruit to be made into marmalade – boiling the whole fruit then cutting it apart or cutting the fruit up first then boiling it. Each produces a unique texture and look. We watched as Camilla stirred a beautiful copper pot chock full of Seville oranges (her favourite when making orange marmalade) for the next batch of marmalade and observed as she poured them into their respective pots and canned them in the proper way. Finally, we taste tested a couple of her marmalades – a particular standout was the Seville oranges mixed with vanilla and ground up coffee beans. Mm!
Upon leaving, we were each given a jar of Seville orange marmalade to take home. Mine was gone the first week I opened it… Such a treat! Talks of pickling workshops are in the works, from what I hear…
The events are announced almost sporadically, so to get a spot at the next event, you’re going to have to keep a diligent eye out for any announcements. Spaces are limited so make sure to pay close attention! You can also subscribe to the Events page and get an automatic notification.
The Preservation Society’s next event is on March 9th at the Art Matters “Three Times” vernissage at Concordia! Make sure to stop by, check out the art (and yes, it’s about food) and grab a jar on the way out.
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