Kumquat Jam

KumquatsWe’ve had a kumquat tree in our yard for the past 15 years. I think I tasted one the day we moved in, thought they were so super sour that I never went near that tree again. But I came home this year determined to take advantage of fresh food and make something out of it. So, I went out there and picked a million of them and got to slicing. (Look how pretty they are!)

Kumquats

Did you know that those tiny little buggers have a million seeds?

kumquat seedsIt’s a pain, but once you get the hang of it, it’s not so bad. As I sliced, I just poked them out with the tip of the knife. So, I think I used about two pounds of kumquats and by the time I finished slicing them all, the citrus smell was already overtaking the kitchen.

kumquat jam

To that, I added three cups of water and brought it up to a simmer. Once it was simmering, I added two cups of sugar and let it simmer for about an hour an a half, giving it a stir every 10-15 minutes. If you want it to be sweeter, you could add more sugar, because the final product is quite tangy. I like that, but if you don’t, add more and keep tasting it until you do!

After about half an hour, it looked like this:

kumquat jamAnd after about an hour, it looked like this:

kumquat jamAt this point the whole house smells like kumquats! So, when the texture becomes syrup-like, it’s ready. I checked it periodically by cooling a bit on a spoon to see how thick it was. You can choose it make it more or less dense depending on your preference. The final product:

kumquat jamLook how yummy that looks! It’s really tangy and the peels are super soft. So this morning, I spread some of it on a piece of sourdough toast…and breakfast!

kumquat jam

I got quite a bit of jam out of those two pounds of kumquats, so I’ll be gifting them along my trip up north today. 
kumquat jam

It’s Good to be Back

It’s been almost a year since my last post and I’m thrilled to be back. What could have possibly kept me away from cooking, my most favorite activity? The most intense and stressful year of my life.

I was accepted into an international MBA program through the Institute of Exterior Commerce of Spain so that I could learn what I need to pursue my career goals of working in the import/export of gourmet foods and wine. It’s been an amazing experience, though exhausting, but I was lucky enough to share the journey with some amazing and intelligent people.

So, now I’m back in California, enjoying my newfound freedom from projects, exams and presentations. And with that freedom I’m enjoying the fresh produce that summer brings us. My inspiration for this dish? Heirloom tomatoes, of course!

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Heirloom tomatoes, avocado, mango, beets, grilled corn, goat cheese and pistachios with a lemon, cilantro and extra virgin olive oil vinaigrette. Simple and fresh for a hot summer’s day. And homemade (on the grill) rosemary focaccia.

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ingredientes

focaccia

So, there will definitely be more to come from my summertime home, relaxing on the porch and enjoying California.

porch

flowerI’m heading up north next to enjoy the scenery of the central coast and the bay area. And to drink wine and eat delicious food with friends and family.

It feels good to be back in my wordpress world 🙂

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