Kumquat is a Cantonese word that means “Golden orange” or “Golden Tangerine”. It is a member of the citrus family and sibling to lime, lemon, and oranges. Kumquat is basically citrus fruits that look like oranges with a size of an olive. And honestly, I regret meeting this tiny tasty treat this late. Everything about this fruit is perfectly adorable but the look of it makes the viewer chase it in markets.
People often ask how much kumquats are enough for eating in a day. Because the fruit is so delicious that it’s even harder to resist the temptation. And responding to that question, the benefits this tiny fruit provides deserve binge eating.
Even though I got introduced to this fruit too late, I’ll not let you be late to enjoy this little piece of sweet & sour citrus ball. So, without any further ado, let’s dig deeper into everything about kumquat.
What is Kumquat?
Kumquat is a Cantonese word that means “Golden orange” or “Golden Tangerine”. It is a member of the citrus family and sibling to lime, lemon, and oranges. Kumquat is basically citrus fruits that look like oranges with a size of an olive.
The kumquat is native to southeast Asia. It is grown commonly in China, India, Japan. It is also grown in midwinter in North America in Florida and California. The kumquat is oblong or round in shape and bright orange in color.
The Kumquat fruit ideally grows in the warm temperatures of Florida and California. Even in low temperatures, the Kumquat tree provides fruit in large numbers.
The Kumquat has a sweet flavor when ripe with a hint of sour and tangy touch. The closest taste that i find to kumquats is of tangerine or clementines. They are not similar to orange taste but are citrusy. It has a flavor of its own which better not be judged prior to tasting it. Fair enough right?
Varieties of Kumquat:
Out of eight different and great varieties of Kumquat, the Marumi, Meiwa, Nagami, and the Ornamental Hong Kong Wild are the famous tastiest species. And choosing out the best for you, we are describing two of the best species here. One is nagami and the other one is Meiwa.
The variety of Kumquat has a sweet rind and flesh but with a more tart flavor. These can be distinguished on their shape basis. As the nagami’s are more oval.
This variety of kumquat has a milder, sweet taste. Meiwa’s are larger in size compared to their other species siblings. Meiwa is round in shape.
Other varieties are mostly the hybrids of these two main species and are somehow similar in sweetness, sourness, and juiciness to these two main streams.
How to eat a kumquat?
Kumquats are entirely edible. The rind and inner juicy flesh are all edible. This makes it a complete snack that you can just eat out of hand.
- A fancier way that I usually follow is to thinly slice it into pieces and sprinkle some seasoning on top. Toss the thin slices and enjoy the sweet & sour seasoned kumquat. The small oval kumquats look adorable when served this way.
- This sweet-tart juicy fruit doesn’t need any sprinkles but still. It’s always better to explore more. So I just tried tossing some kumquats in powdered sugar as well as salt. And guess what? The results were heavily surprising. I ended up eating a whole basket of these flavorful fruits.
Depending on the variety you are eating, the kumquats can be eaten in a variety of ways. Raw, candied, turn in marmalade or pureed, or pickled, it serves all purposes.
Seasons of Kumquat
The kumquats are available on the basis of what variety you are looking for. Well, what I suggest is to look for them in December or January. They are at peak in this period. And you will fall in love with the texture, taste, and tart of this beautiful tiny fruit. But these are not just the two months of kumquats’ appearance. The kumquats can be caught as early as November and as late as April.
The warm climates are mostly the originator of this specific citrus fruit. A small shrub-like tree gives birth to these amazing creatures.
Nutritional Punch of little kumquats:
These tiny citrusy-tart kumquats are not just tasty but have a lot more to reveal. The nutritional value of kumquats is amazing. The fruit is good for pre-diabetic or diabetic patients. It’s a heavy source of Vitamin C and fiber.
Here’s a list of nutrient benefits that you can attain from these little champ fruits.
- Rich in antioxidants which makes them defenders.
- Supports a healthy lifestyle by boosting immunity.
- Releases dehydration from the body by providing more portions of Vitamin C.
- Its calories portion is as less that it can help fight obesity.
- It also provides fiber.
How to store kumquats?
Here is the sad news that I am going to break with you. Unfortunately, Kumquats are so bad at storage that they turn more vulnerable than lemons and oranges. So you can’t keep them for longer.
But still, in case you want to store them, just use a paper bag and put the fruit in that bag and leave it for 3 to 4 days on the shelf. A better option is to keep it refrigerated in an air-tight bag. That will work well for a week.
Grow your own Kumquats:
Kumquats are easy-to-grow trees. They have least to no thorns over them which makes them a perfect indoor container-based fruit tree. The size of the tree is the same as a shrub so it seems pleasing to the eyes as well. Containers are a good home to them when there is a chance of a cold snap.
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