Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pickled Kumquats Are Surprisingly Hard to Come By

I noted in my Twist bio that pickled kumquats and cashew butter on waffles make a fine comfort food. I feel a little bad about tempting people to a condiment that is by no means universally available, so at the end of this post I have included more information on obtaining pickled kumquats.

Since undiluted pickled kumquats are quite, shall we say, lively, I recently made up a recipe for Kumquat Cashew Butter that tones down the kumquats and makes a tasty spread for crackers or baguettes. Lacking pickled kumquats, one could probably substitute fresh kumquats (which are starting to come into season about now), perhaps cooked in a sugar syrup. Almond or hazelnut butter might also be an interesting substitute for cashew butter.

kunquat cashew butter

Kumquat Cashew Butter

1/4 cup cashew butter (I am partial to East Wind brand)
4 tsp cream cheese
2 T syrup from pickled kumquats
4 pickled kumquats, chopped
pinch salt (optional, if using unsalted nut butter)

Mix cashew butter, cream cheese and syrup. Add kumquats. Adjust quantities to taste, and add salt as needed. Garnish with pickled kumquats and cashews. (The jar of kumquats used for this photo was canned with star anise, so I added that to the garnish as well.)

Obtaining Pickled Kumquats

Haddon House makes very nice pickled kumquats, and it might be possible to find them at the grocery store in some areas; they don't seem to be available online at the moment. As of this writing, pickled kumquats were available online from E. Waldo Ward .

After I exhausted my first magical jar of pickled kumquats (which I had nursed along for some years) and discovered how difficult it was to obtain more, Matt came to my rescue last Christmas by giving me everything we needed to can our own. A future post will include our recipe, which turned out very well.

Another year, I plan to try this recipe for kumquat marmalade. The vinegar kick of our pickled kumquats is not to everyone's taste, and I imagine marmalade might meet with wider acceptance.

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