Kum--what? In the garden centers you often see mini trees with small orange citrus fruits. Well these are kumquats! There is hardly any bite to these citrus fruits because the flesh is negligible. Kumquats are mainly used for the citrus peel. The taste can be compared to tangerine. Since kumquats are not for sale in every store, I prefer to ferment the kumquats. This way you can easily keep them in the fridge for 6 months or longer. The fermentation process also enhances the citrus aroma. So win-win! The principle of lacto-fermentation is actually very simple. Add enough salt to create an environment where good bacteria can do their thing, while the bad ones cannot survive. In general you use 2% salt in relation to the total weight of your product. Then you also make sure that as little oxygen as possible can get to the fermentation. If you want to experiment with other ferments I advise you to deepen your knowledge first. In general fermentation is simple and safe, but some basic knowledge is required to make sure everything goes as planned.
- 100 gram kumquats
- 2 gram salt
- Step 1 Weigh the kumquats and then weigh 2% of that weight in salt. This recipe can easily be adjusted in terms of quantity, but the ratios are very important. Per 100 grams of kumquats you need 2 grams of salt. Although some people ferment by estimating the amount of salt necessary, I recommend to weigh this as accurate as possible. Mix the kumquats and salt together
- Step 2 put the kumquats and salt in a plastic bag and draw vacuum. If you don’t have a vacuum machine, you can also use a resealable freezer bag, submerge the bag in water up to just against the edge (make sure no water gets in) and seal it. Alternative: You can also crush the kumquats in a jar and put a bag filled with water on top of it. I don’t prefer this method for kumquats because they don’t give off much juice and some oxigen can still get to the ferment this way.
- Step 3 Then let the kumquats ferment for about 7 days at room temperature, away from direct sunlight. If all goes well you will notice that the bag starts to inflate like a balloon. Don’t panic! This is a sign that your fermentation is going correctly
- Step 4 after about 7 days you will notice that the kumquats have a slightly acidic taste. If this is not the case you can close the bag again and let it ferment a bit longer.
- Step 5 Keep the kumquats in the refrigerator in a closed jar.
- Step 6 The possibilities are endless! Chop them finely and use them in desserts or replace your pickled lemon in your tagine with kumquats! Success guaranteed.