That’s My Jam: Fit Jam and Matador Marmalade

By: Jason Garvin, CSUN Dietetic Intern Cohort 2019-2020

Image Credit: Marilyn Magaram Center

Looking for a sweet spread without all the added sugar and calories? The Marilyn Magaram Center (MMC) has two new concoctions to tempt your palate! First up is the Matador Marmalade, which has been reformulated as a reduced sugar option. This tasty spread is filled with Valencia oranges hand-picked from CSUN’s own historic Orange Grove!1 The Orange Grove predates the establishment of the university in 1958 and has been a fixture on the campus ever since.1 Sustainability is always at the forefront of everything we do here at CSUN, and this marmalade continues that tradition. MMC Director Dr. Annette Besnilian states, “Matador Marmalade was created out of the idea that a product made by students, for students, could generate school spirit and add to the university’s great legacy.”2 This is one of the MMC’s finest products and definitely expands on our legacy.

The question to be asked is, “What is a marmalade anyway?” We know that a jelly is made from the juice of a fruit, and a jam is made from whole fruit, but where does a marmalade fit into this equation? Come to find out, a marmalade falls somewhere in the middle of these two products. The consistency of the product is that of a jelly, but with suspended pieces of fruit and rind.3 The rind is a crucial part of the recipe and adds a certain bitterness to the final product. The product lends well to savory applications as well. Use it to create a sauce for chicken, or add it to a stir fry to enhance those veggies!

The second MMC product, and the newest addition to the university food lineup, is our raspberry jalapeño Fit Jam. This product is also a reduced sugar option and offers a sweet treat with the right amount of heat. Although this product does not contain fruit grown on the premises, I think you will agree that it is a perfect complement to the Matador Marmalade. Did you know jalapeños are packed with nutrients? One jalapeño has only 4 calories, but provides 10% of the reference daily intake (RDI) of vitamin C, 4% of vitamin B6, 2% of vitamin A, vitamin K, folate, manganese, and fiber.4 That spicy kick is an effect of the capsaicin found in the jalapeños and may boost metabolism and increase weight loss.5 This jam is a must-have on a charcuterie board or a spicy glaze for a roasted chicken. If you are looking to switch up your chicken wing recipe, try my recipe below!

Spicy Ponzu and Fit Jam Hot Wings

Serves 4

2 pounds chicken wings

Salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup Fit Jam 

1/4 cup ponzu

1/8 cup rice wine vinegar

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 serrano peppers, minced

1 tablespoon ginger, minced

1/4 cup scallions, thinly sliced

2 tbs sesame seeds

2 tbs olive oil


Preheat oven to 425oF. Add chicken to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake for 45 minutes. The chicken wings should be cooked through and browned. While the chicken is in the oven, mix the Fit Jam, ponzu, vinegar, butter, garlic, serrano peppers, and ginger in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and continue simmering for 15 minutes until slightly thickened. Remove sauce from the heat and pour into a large bowl. Add chicken wings to the bowl and toss. Add scallions and sesame seeds. Enjoy!


  1. CSUN Orange Grove and Pond. California State University, Northridge. Published August 16, 2017. Accessed December 3, 2019.
  2. Herstein O. CSUN Student Food Scientists Try their Hand at Crafting the Spicy and Sweet. CSUN Today. Published October 19, 2016. Accessed December 4, 2019.
  3. Filippone, PT. How Does Marmalade Differ From Jelly?. The Spruce Eats. Published June 28, 2019. Accessed December 3, 2019.
  4. Julson, E. 7 Surprising Health Benefits of Jalapeños. Healthline. Published March 10, 2018. Accessed December 3, 2019.
  5. Whiting S, Derbyshire E, Tiwari BK. Capsaicinoids and capsinoids. A potential role for weight management? A systematic review of the evidence. Appetite. 2012;59(2):341-348.

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