The history of Marmalade

The history of jam begins in ancient Greece where our ancestors made melimilon, i.e. they boiled quinces with honey on a low flame and thus preserved them. Noticing that when the mixture started to coagulate as it cooled, pectin was discovered.

The production of this early jam was also adopted by the Romans, who called it melimelum. Στο βιβλίο του Απίκιου «De re culinaria» υπάρχει μια συνταγή για το πώς μπορούμε να συντηρήσουμε ολόκληρα κυδώνια βρασμένα σε μέλι και «έψημα», δηλαδή πετιμέζι. Την πρώτη γραπτή αναφορά στην jam we find it in a Roman cookbook and later in the book of the Byzantine emperor Constantine Porphyrogenitus “On a Kingdom of Order”, which is not only a treatise on the imperial dinners in Byzantium 9th century, but also a list of foods and foods, mentions, among other things, confections made from quince and lemon, as well as from rose, apple, plum and pear.

Η μαρμελάδα στη συνέχεια εξελίχτηκε στη σημερινή της μορφή κατά τον 17ocentury. Με το πέρασμα των αιώνων, αν και η πρώιμη αυτή μαρμελάδα εξακολουθούσε να είναι πολύ αγαπητή, η λέξη «μελίμηλον– melimelum» χάθηκε από τις ευρωπαϊκές γλώσσες, για να κάνει ξανά την εμφάνισή της περί το 1500 στην πορτογαλική λέξη «marmelo“, which means quince and by extension the specific preparation. In French it became “marmelade” and in English “marmalade“.

Naturally, variations on the original recipe began to appear. In Tudor England they experimented with oranges and lemons. In the 18th century in Scotland, in the city of Dundee, orange marmalade appears (along with the first jam factory) and tradition wants the Scots to be the ones who first started preparing it in the current, more watery form known to us.
Jam, like all sweets made with fruit, sugar and water, serves both for the preservation and long-term use of fruits after the end of their fruiting, as well as for the consumption of fruits that cannot be eaten raw, due to taste (e.g. e.g. quince), but also for the consumption of parts of the fruit that we normally throw away such as e.g. the peel of citrus fruits.