Sunday, March 18, 2012

Kumquat Trio

Well back to reality! It has been a great week of no internet and minimal cell phone service.

I was fortunate enough to spend the "Spring Break" at heaven on earth, the lake.  Even though the lake's water level is really low it is still a peaceful, serene place to relax and check out from reality.

This beautiful citrus tree lives in the front yard at the lake house, it is a kumquat tree.  

These are it's beautiful fruit! 

Unlike other citrus fruit you can eat these little gems whole, no need to peel them.  So with that in mind I decided there had to be a great recipe or several great recipes these cuties could be incorporated into.  

The first thing I made with them was Kumquat Pico de Gallo.  

It was so easy and great on a tortilla chip.

Then my Aunt Lida had some frozen cooked shrimp and so we added diced shrimp to the pico for a delicious Shrimp & Kumquat Ceviche.  

After our delicious concocting I decided there had to be other things we could use these citrus bites in.  
So I hopped on a ladder and started picking, it takes some time to pick these little guys.  I can see why they are so pricey in the grocery store.  

Once I got home I had to figure out what I was going to make.  Marmalade, preserves, and infused vodka all crossed my mind.  

I knew from my grapefruit experimenting that the vodka would be great so on the far right you can see the Kumquat infused vodka.  Then I had several left so I decided to do preserved kumquats similar to preserved lemons; thats the jar on the left.   

Here are the recipes for the trio of kumquats! 

Kumquat Ceviche

1 cup diced tomato
3 deseeded and deveined diced jalapenos
1 medium diced onion
2 T diced cilantro
10 sliced kumquats
10 diced cooked shrimp
1 lemon or lime juiced

Combine and enjoy!!

 Kumquat Vodka

14 Kumquats
1 cup Vodka

Half the kumquats and stuff into a jar then cover with vodka.  Let sit out not refrigerated for at least 48 hours up to a week.  Every time you think about it shake the jar to incorporate the vodka even more.  Once you are ready to use the vodka you can strain and indulge in something delicious. 

Preserved Kumquats

20 Kumquats, washed
Sea Salt
Fresh lemon juice to cover (about 6 lemons) 

Wash and dry fruit and then make a single vertical cut 3/4 of the way though each kumquat.  Fill each cut with as much salt as it will hold and place them into a sterilized wide mouth jar.  Compress them into the jar so there is little space and then fill with fresh squeezed lemon juice to cover.  Seal and set aside do not refrigerate.  

The kumquats will be ready in about 2 to 3 weeks so I will keep you posted on what happens in the jar between now and then.  

From what I have read about preserved lemons you want to wait until the rinds are very tender and then you can use them to garnish and flavor any kind of dish you would like.  

Hope you enjoy these and if you can't find kumquats use any citrus you like!


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