Sunday, 1 February 2015

Cumquat Jam

Many, many years ago I  purchased a pair of cumquat trees, brought them home and planted them in oak barrels. They were much admired their decorative qualities as we waited for them to produce. And they did. Unfortunately, I discovered that my taste buds did not favour cumquats.

 There was no room in our garden for fruit that would not get used - they were donated to a more appreciative household.

Time has moved on, as have my tastebuds, which is just as well as a big bag of cumquats arrived at my house.

They are such an intense orange colour and the flavour tart with just a hint of bitterness - I can hardly wait to experiment with some ideas and recipes.

First up, the jam or marmalade.  Half the bag of cumquats will become jam and the rest for my experiments.

This recipe is a version of one given to me by my friend Faye Hector and one that was forwarded to me some time ago from Ro Richards, who visited our house during our Open Garden. We were discussing preserves and she kindly forwarded her recipe, it was originally from her sister and has become a family favourite.

Cumquat Jam
1 kg cumquats
1 kg sugar

¼ cup orange liqueur or whiskey

Wash cumquats, cut into halves and flick seeds out.

Weigh. You will need equal amounts of sugar and cumquats

Place cumquats in a food processor and puree, add a little water.

Place pureed cumquats in a pan and simmer until soft, approximately 10 minutes. Stir every now and then to prevent the mixture sticking to the saucepan. Add more water if necessary.

Add sugar, stir until dissolved and bring mixture to boil. Continue cooking for 10 minutes or until gel test is satisfactory.

Add orange liqueur or whiskey if using, mix well and simmer for a further minute.

Allow to cool slightly and bottle into sterilised jars. Cover with cellophane/Klearview covers and seal.

Makes approximately 5 jars of jam

From Ro
Dear Kerrie
Thanks for a most enjoyable visit to your garden, morning tea and preserve tasting.  Here is our family recipe for cumquat marmalade (some call it jam).  It really does only have to cook for the 10 minutes, which means it stays a lovely colour.  I try to have a few not quite ripe cumquats in the mix to make sure it jells, and have not had a failure yet, nor have our family members.  If you like an alcoholic kick, just add some Lemoncello or brandy at the end before you bottle it.
Ro Richards

Cumquat Marmalade – Marg Evans

1 kg fruit – about 40 cumquats
1.5kg sugar
½ to ¾ litre water

Cut cumquats in half.

Flick out pips onto a piece of muslin/old hanky etc

Tie up muslin and add to water and halved cumquats in largish saucepan

Bring to the boil and boil quickly for 10 minutes.

Add the sugar and stir until it is dissolved, then let it come to a boil.

Boil rapidly for TEN MINUTES ONLY.

Let it cool for ¼ hour, then remove the muslin bag and “wand” the jam to break up the skins.

Pour into a jug and fill jars or ladle into jars.

Put lids or cellophane on while still warm.


Make sure your jars are clean and that the lids do not smell of pickles!

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