Sister triumphs with Four “Gold Awards” and Two “Best in Category” at the recently held Dalemain Marmalade Awards 2014 at Dalemain Mansion and Gardens, Cumbria, United Kingdom. Dalemain is the world’s leading marmalade competition held every year since 2005. With well over 2,000 entries this year, for both amateur (homemade) and artisanal (commercial) marmalade categories, it is a serious gathering of marmalade enthusiasts…
Sister entered four bottles of marmalade for judging this year, after experimenting and cooking hundreds of pounds of citrus fruit that yielded dozens and dozens of bottles of unusual and unique marmalade combinations. She was up against roughly 1,700 bottles submitted for the home-made categories! Clearly, she was in it to win it. I am hoping there is a family genetic trait/DNA that is passed on to our descendants to strive for the best, no matter what the food or other endeavor…
For the Marmalade Hall of Fame (sponsored by Paddington Bear), she entered two bottles of marmalade:
Bottle # 1 : Pink Grapefruit, Lemon, Honey & Bergamot
Bottle # 2 : “Merry Marmalade” – Meyer Lemon with Tequila
For the international category, (sponsored by Mackays) she entered another two bottles of marmalade:
Bottle # 3 : Kalamansi & Lisbon Lemon
Bottle # 4 : Meyer Lemon with Ginger and Star Anise
She won GOLD awards for ALL FOUR bottles, and won best in category for:
Marmalade Hall of Fame – Pink Grapefruit, Lemon, Honey & Bergamot – which she explains was the entry because with Paddington Bear as the sponsor, he just had to have a touch of honey, don’t you think?
International – Kalamansi & Lisbon Lemon – a concoction of lemon rind and kalamansi juice that apparently wowed the judges. She may have lived on New York’s Upper East Side for the last 45 years or so, but you can’t take the Pinay out of her bloodstream.
Sister joined the contest once before in 2012, with an entry that was competing for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award in 2012. She even went to the extent of cutting traditional seville orange rinds into the shape of diamonds, and labored to distribute them evenly against the surface of the bottle so it would be worthy of the Queen, but she only got a silver award at that time, in a VERY HEATED COMPETITION for that particular award that year. She also got bronze for two other bottles. I mention this because the English, and subjects in their previous colonies or members of the Commonwealth are DEAD SERIOUS about their marmalade, and it’s rather unusual for an “outsider” to break through the invisible barrier of sorts… But these awards are very international now, fielding entries from all corners of the globe (even I once sent in a kalamansi marmalade entry, but FEDEX delivered it a day after the Sunday deadline, hence I was disqualified from the get-go, and my bottle was never tasted) and they have re-kindled an interest in marmalade making around the globe.
So if you take a look at the current 2014 list of winners in the home-made category, notice with some competitive glee that the list of winners, with their home towns listed as Kent, Surrey, Lancashire, Vale of Glamorgan now includes Sister’s two Best in Category wins with her New York home address. And as far as we know, she might be the first Cebuana via New York to win the gold at this competition! Actually, she may even be the first American to win Best in Category award as well. Heeheehee. Congratulations!!! I can’t wait to taste the “discarded” bottles of marmalade that will hopefully end up in a balikbayan box (see similar shipment, here) on the way to Manila in the next few months… :)