Our house is situated on a ridge in an old Jewish neighbourhood of Johannesburg, built by the Italian prisoners of war. It’s set on a slope and its garden looks just like a typical Mediterranean country garden.

Picture a house on an orchard rising on a slope a little inland on the Amalfi Coast – but in Johannesburg, without the sea, or that breathtaking beauty, or the energy of “La Dolce Vita”, or…..any of it.

But you get the idea. Our house is not an English country home, or a Herbet Baker design. It’s a rustic, Mediterranean style, village type home and it has Lemon trees. Three of them, and they’ve become very prolific thanks to my Dad’s secret weapon.

A few years ago, I complained to him about the soapy taste of my lemons and he told me to place 3 large iron nails in the soil around the trunk. What a difference it has made. Suddenly, over the last 2 to 3 years, the production and quality of fruit has multiplied and flourished.

Last year we made litres of lemonade. This year we had so many lemons that we shared them with loved ones and neighbours and got wonderful gifts in return. The best of them being my sister Robby’s Lemon Marmalade.

She painstakingly went through the process of making this glorious golden Lemon Marmalade with a twist. Feeling adventurous, she added a little cinnamon and fresh mint from her newly planted vegetable patch. The result is sublime. Presented in gorgeous Luigi Bormioli Lock-Eat Glass Jars, we’ve been enjoying it for breakfast on buttered toast or with cheese, crackers and a sun-downer – which in these current times of Lockdown prohibition, is even more Delicious!

Here’s the recipe:

3 Ingredients Lemon Marmalade with a Twist


12 lemons

1.5kg of sugar

600ml water

The twist – a dash of ground cinnamon and 3 sprigs of mint


Start by scrubbing the lemons under running water with a scotchbrite sponge.

Halve the lemons, slice them very thinly and then half your slices again.  Be mindful to remove all the pips (a truly painful job, but worth it in the end).

Place the slices into a large pot, cover with water and let them stand for 24 hours.

Once the time is up, place the pot on the stove and heat the water, but don’t allow it to boil.  Remove the pot from the stove and let the lemons stand for a further 24 hours.

Once again, when your time is up, strain the lemon slices discarding the water and replace with fresh water to cover the lemons. Bring to the boil and let them simmer for about 45 mins.

In the meantime, make the syrup in a fairly deep, wide pan by placing 600ml of water and the sugar in the pan and bringing to the boil.  Simmer for approximately 5 mins to form a syrup.

Once you have reached the cooking time for the lemons, spear the lemon peel with a fork and if tender, transfer the slices into the pot with the syrup.  Boil for a further 45mins and add the twist ingredients.

Once ready, pour the hot marmalade into your sterilized Luigi Bormioli Lock-Eat jars available at Firehouse Gifts.  Place the lids on the jars locking them, turn the jars upside down and allow to rest overnight.

Wake up to a glorious morning, toast a thick slice of ciabatta bread, spread with a generous helping of creamy butter, add a dollop of lemon marmalade and enjoy……. Its heavenly!

Luigi Bormioli Glass Lock-Eat Jars bring beauty and practicality to any kitchen. The natural rubber seal will keep your jam deliciously fresh and spreadable and prevent the ants from running away with your breakfast. Minimise waste and maximise freshness with Luigi Bormioli Lock-Eat Food Jars.