squash marmalade, you ask? yes! i respond with a gleeful and sunny enthusiasm. i think anything so bright and smooth can only put me in a gleeful and sunny disposition. it probably didn’t help that the weather on sunday was beautiful. bright sun streaming in, tickling the powdery snow that’s blanketing detroit.  oh how that winter sunlight–harsher, stoic, and somehow more guarded–can turn the white snow blue while it makes the detroit river blue pop with a ferocity i haven’t seen except in photographs of the arctic. but it could also just be that the river’s iced over a bit.

tara and i went for a walk around belle isle to enjoy the sun’s visit (brief visit, at that) and to move our bodies a bit, stretching and striding in that cold january wind that, when it’s on your side, coaxes you onward, lulling you into a comfortable cold until you turn, and then: BAM! that wind cuts through you and all those layers don’t mean a thing. it just made us walk faster. and for me, the warm sunshine of this glowing orange-hued marmalade held that wind at bay, letting me absorb the stark, steep contrast of the winter landscape. we tried, desperately, to find a word to describe the january sunlight that gushed from the sky… it is somehow more thin, more taut, more… not brittle… but what? we settled with intense, thin, and taut. oh, how the english major in both of us tussled and clucked with dissatisfaction in our inability to find the right word. how we wished we’d a larger vocabulary. perhaps this is a late new years resolution.

regardless, onto the marmalade. a super easy use of my multiple pounds of pink banana puree! hooray!

pink banana marmalade
1 cup squash puree
3/4 cup cane sugar
1 stick cinnamon
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 orange, juiced
water, if needed, to cook squash if it’s not pureed

throw all the ingredients into a pot on your stove top and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  cook down until you reach your desired consistency. if you’re squash is not in puree form, you can chop it into chunks and simmer with water until cooked, about 45 minutes. i cooked mine down for 20-30 minutes, until it reached the texture of apple butter (but smoother, oh this squash i so smooooth!). transfer into a glass jar, cool. smear on bread, crackers, graham crackers, pretzels, you name it! i even baked it into a sort of filling in leftover pie crust… delightfully earthy, sweet, and sunshine in a jar!

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