Have you eaten a kumquat? You really should. They're one of my most favoritist of fruits. But they're a cross of pleasure and pain. Tart and sweet. Bitey and delectable. Chewy and punches of flavor. Kumquats are those eency weency tiny little wee bit o' orange fruits. Teencier than tangerines. Zwergs.
Kumquat trees are cute and small, too. They're like the Gary Coleman of citrus. Without the Whatcha talkin' about Willis. And the weirdest part? You eat them whole. Peel and all. Actually, it's the peel that makes them palatable.
How to eat a kumquat: Put in mouth and chew chew chew. Don't wait and around and savor the flavor. Don't roll it around on your tongue and see what flavor emerges next. No. Just chew the shit out of it until the citrus tang-pang-pain breaks through to juicy fruit essence of sweet yum and you've made it. Phew.
This is what it looks like as you work your way through the kumquat chew cycle:
Wait, there's more! Happy Chinese New Year! Kumquats are a traditional fruit to give as good luck at the Chinese New Year. Kumquats symbolize prosperity and make a great gift this time of year.
I wish I could grow kumquats here in Portland. Then I could have an abundant crop and make things with them like kumquat preserves or marmalade, or mash them up with vodka and make a crazy mad infusion. And then there's always the kumquat-ginger-caipirinha, made with cachaca, ginger, superfine sugar and kumquats. Holy moly. I really should make this...
slice of kumquat for garnish
2 oz cachaça
5 kumquats, sliced
1 1/2 - 2 Tbsp superfine sugar
1 tsp chopped, fresh ginger
Whether or not you eat kumquats au natural, or in a decadent drink as described above, you need to have a kumquat or two at least once in your lifetime. And now's the time of year. Hop to. And happy new year!
Place the kumquats, ginger and sugar into an old-fashioned glass.
Fill the glass with ice, then add the cachaça.
Stir well or shake it.
Garnish with a slice of kumquat.