Melon Muraba is a preserve made with melon and sugar. It has a wonderful, subtle flavor enhanced by spices and can be eaten as a dessert or as a candy, or used as a cake decoration or as a jam. In Georgia, it is usually made in July and August when melons are ripe.
Ingredients: 1 thick skinned small to medium size water melon. Only the white part below the skin is used. This recipe used 1.2 kilos of the white part.
1.7 kilos of sugar, 1 tbs of bicarbonate of soda, one third tsp of cinnamon powder, 2 cardamon seeds, 3 cloves, and one third tsp of vanilla powder. You will also need a selection of cookie cutters.
See picture below for a close up of the spices used in this recipe.
Preparation: Cut the melon into six pieces and remove the red flesh. Only the white part below the melon skin is used. The flesh is not used in this recipe.
Cut the skin into fairly large pieces (see picture below) and use a spoon to carefully scoop out the red flesh.
Remove the peel from the outer skin of each piece of melon.
Discard the outer skins.
The prepared slices should look like the ones in the picture below.
Use cookie cutters to create different shapes from the strips of melon.
Carefully remove any remaining red flesh.
Add to a bowl.
Use a fork to prick each piece three or four times. This will allow the bicarbonate of soda to penetrate.
Add the pieces to a deep pot.
Fill a cup with 200 ml of water and add 1 heaped tbs of bicarbonate of soda.
Pour the dissolved bicarbonate of soda over the pieces of melon. Add 1 liter of cold water and stir thoroughly.
Leave for 5 hours.
When ready, pour the melon pieces into a sieve held over a sink. Allow cold water to continuously pour over the melon pieces for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure the bicarbonate of soda is completely washed off.
Add 900 grams of sugar to a deep pot. Mix with 1.5 liters of water. Bring to the boil on a low temperature, stirring continuously. Allow to simmer for five minutes.
Add the melon pieces and stir thoroughly.
Bring to the boil on a low temperature. Allow to simmer for forty minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for 10 hours.
After 10 hours, add 800 grams of sugar, together with one third tsp of cinnamon powder, 2 cardamon seeds, 3 cloves, and one third tsp of vanilla powder. Stir.
Bring to the boil on a low temperature and allow to simmer for 40 minutes.
Storing: Prepare the jars and covers by washing them in very hot water and leaving until they are completely dry. Fill each jar with melons first and then carefully add the juice. This recipe should be sufficient to fill two 1 kilo jars. Store in a refrigerator or in a cool, dark place.
Serving: Melon muraba can be served as a dessert or breakfast and can also be used as an ingredient for cakes.
Enjoy your Melon Muraba!