Kumquats are a citrus fruit that is in season in early winter in most places. They look like miniature, oblong oranges, and every part of them is edible except for the seeds. In fact, the peels are the most flavorful and aromatic part of kumquats.
This simple recipe makes candied kumquat slivers that look like tiny wheels. Also known as kumquat glass, these elegant morsels are tasty as is, but also fantastic dipped in melted chocolate (or served along with anything chocolate flavored).
- 12 kumquats
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- Wash the kumquats. Slice them crosswise into thin rounds (no thicker than 1/16-inch). Remove and discard any seeds as you come across them. Put the kumquat slices into a bowl.
- In a small saucepan, make a simple syrup by bringing the sugar and the water to a simmer over medium heat. Stir constantly until the sugar has completely dissolved.
- Pour the still warm simple syrup over the kumquat slices in the bowl. Stir gently to make sure that all of the kumquat rounds are coated with the syrup. Let the fruit sit in the syrup at room temperature for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 175F. Alternatively, you could use your dehydrator set to 155F (expect a slightly longer drying time).
- Drain the kumquat pieces in a colander set over a large bowl (be sure to save the delicious citrus-flavored syrup for another use - try it in cocktails or use it to make preserved whole kumquats).
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the syrup-coated kumquat slivers out on the sheet in a single layer with none of the pieces touching. Bake the sugared kumquat for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
- Take the baking sheet out of the oven. Turn over each piece of candied kumquat. Yes, this part is a bit labor intensive. Trust me, it's worth it. Bake for another 10 minutes.
- Let the candied kumquat pieces cool completely before transferring them to storage containers. They will keep for several months if stored away from moisture and heat.
Additional serving suggestions:
- Chop a handful of candied kumquats and add them to any fruit sorbet or granita recipe. They are especially fantastic with raspberry or blackberry.
- Press candied kumquat rounds into the icing of a chocolate cake.
- The same technique works wonderfully with cheesecake: simply press the kumquat "wheels" into the surface of the cheesecake in a pleasing pattern.