Sorry I have been M.I.A. on the web for a bit! I have a lot to update, so I hope your sweet tooth is not totally on overload after today!
You have all heard of the Kumquat Fairy by now. I used about half of my supply on the Kumquat upside-down cake.
Now on to my second kumquat adventure: Cardamom-lemon cookies with candied kumquat topping. I’ll break this recipe down into 2 parts. First I’ll go over how to candy kumquats. You’ll want to do this part a few days in advance, but plan on using the candied kumquats within 2 weeks or so (unless you have awesome sterile technique…the kitchen kind, not the lab kind…).
Directions: Wash & De-seed the kumquats: Cut the ends off of each kumquat and gently squeeze or pick the seeds out of the center piece. While removing the seeds, hold the kumquat over a bowl to collect spilled juice. Collect the ends and center rind of the kumquats in the bowl. Be warned, de-seeding can take a while, and if you have any cuts on your hands, it will sting! You can freeze the sliced kumquats if you don’t have time to use them immediately.
Sterilize the canning jars: I used 4 small mason jars for this canning, 3 for the kumquats and 1 for extra kumquat syrup. Place the jars in a large pot of water, along with the lids, making sure all surfaces are covered.
Bring the pot of water to a rolling boil and cover the pot. Let the jars boil for 10 minutes, and leave them in the hot water until you are ready to use them. At the same time, start a smaller pot of water boiling. This will be for sterilizing tongs and a large spoon. Place the end of the tongs and a large soup spoon in the water for at least 5 minutes.
Candy the kumquats: For every pound (16 oz) of kumquats, bring 4 cups of water and 2 cups of sugar to a boil. (I had 3/4 pound, so I used 3 C water and 1.5 C sugar.) Add the kumquats, and return to a boil. Continue the boil for 15 minutes.
Drain the kumquats over a bowl to collect the syrup. Return the syrup to the pot and concentrate for an additional 15 minutes at a light boil.
Jar the suckers: When you are ready to can, remove the sterile bottles from the water with the sterile tongs. (Careful. The water is hot. Duh.) Turn them upside-down on a clean towel to drain for ~30 seconds.
Flip right side up, one at a time, and add the kumquats from the strainer with the sterilized large soup spoon. (I split mine into 3 jars.) Fill the void volume of the can with the syrup until the kumquats are covered, then quickly use the tongs to loosely cover the jar with the sterile lid, and allow the kumquats to cool.
I saved the remaining syrup in my 4th sterile jar. After the contents have cooled, tighten the lid, and store in the fridge.
The candying process takes away most of the bitterness and sourness of the kumquat, leaving you with a sweet and mild flavor. Perfect for incorporating into other recipes! My next post will be the cardamom and candied kumquat cookies!!