This homemade preservative free Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade Jam is the ideal use for a glut of kumquats at the beginning of Spring when the citrus season is nearly at an end. If you have no idea how to prepare kumquat marmalade then I must confess, neither did I, before we developed this Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade Jam recipe.
In Cape Town it is very popular for the women of the family, and many times even men, to prepare their own home made fruit jams and preserves. Our Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade Jam making started with one of our monthly family visits to Citrusdal, my ancestral home.
My aunt had been telling me for a while that she had received some fig jam as a gift from one of her friends on the farm, and she had never tasted such delicious jam before and so she wanted to give this a try herself, but with kumquats.
Althought I was born and raised in the City of Cape Town, my entire family is originally from a little rural farming town on the N7, outside of Cape Town called Citrusdal. It is a very small and remote town and not many people are even aware it exists. By the name you can probably guess what is farmed in this area. Citrusdal is well-known for farming of citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, grapefruit, naartjies (clementines) and kumquats. It is also the center of Rooibos tea production.
If marmalade or jam are not your thing, why not check out the Best Glazed Orange Bundt Cake or this Bittersweet Citrus Semolina and Almond Cake. If you prefer wheat free baking then this Gluten free Orange and Almond cake is for you. This Citrus Salad with pistachios and pomegranate is perfect on it’s own or as a palate cleansing side dish with a heavy meal.
Because my entire family lives there, we always receive an abundance of oranges, lemons and naartjies during the picking season. Even though kumquats are similar to citrus fruits, it is not widely farmed in Citrusdal and it is actually quite limited and hard to obtain. After we arrived on the farm on a recent visit my aunt immediately informed her son that she wanted a few kumquats before we left in order to make the Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade Jam back home in Cape Town. We were very fortunate to be well associated with the farm owners who kindly allowed a few of the farm workers to gather a whole bag of the fruits for us.
Her son and a few other farm workers entered the groves and gathered up a big bag of the kumquats the morning before we departed. After they had gathered the kumquats, they informed us that we had to fetch it at the farmer’s house, so off we went. We arrived at the farm owner’s home and he just happened to be there when we arrived. My aunt and I kindly thanked him, he asked what we were planning to do with the kumquats. We told him that we planned to make this Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade jam and he requested that we bring him a jar on our next visit.
After receiving our big bag of kumquats, we took the long journey home. The following day my aunt and I went about preparing the jam. Not being experts in making jams or preserves, we were a bit sceptical but nevertheless, we continued as we love trying new recipes, and in no time our jam was complete. Personally, I am not a fan of any type of jams and rarely indulge. However, being part of the process I had to taste the end result and let me tell you, I am hooked!
The Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade jam was just the right consistency and colour. I immediately thought it would be perfect to share with friends and family. We are yet to take the farm owner some of the jam however, I am confident that he will enjoy it just as myself and the others that have tasted the jam.
I sure do hope you enjoy it and Good luck!
Tips for making Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade Jam
- Always sanitise the fruits by soaking in a bicarbonate of soda water bath to remove mould and any residues
- Use fine granulated white sugar
- For home use make smaller quantities of jam and keep to between 500 grams – 1kg of fruit
- Use a low sided wide bottomed pan for quick cooking
- Sterilise the glass jars and lids before spooning in the jam to ensure it doesn’t get mouldy or ferment
Easy Spiced Kumquat Marmalade jam recipe
This Spiced Easy Kumquat Marmalade jam recipe is quick to make and deliciously tangy on toast for breakfast, or with cheese and crackers for an appetizer.
- 500 grams kumquats
- 750 ml water approximately 3 cups
- 7.5 ml bicarbonate of soda a.k.a baking soda approximately 1.5 tsp
Kumquat Marmalade Jam
- 400 grams fine granulated sugar approximately 500 ml or 2 cups
- 500 ml water
- 4 pieces cinnamon sticks
- 4 pods cardamom
Place the whole uncut kumquats in a medium glass, plastic or other non-reactive bowl and cover with the water.
Sprinkle over the bicarbonate of soda and allow to soak for 10 minutes. This will remove any impurities or invisible mould.
After soaking, rinse the kumquats under clean running water and dry with paper towels before proceeding.
Making the jam
Cut each kumquat lengthwise in half then cut each half into 4 sections and remove the seeds.
Bring the sugar, water and spices to the boil in a medium sized pot.
Add the kumquats after 15-20 minutes or when the syrup has thickened and has consistent small bubbles.
Allow the jam to cook on medium heat for another 25-30 minutes until the excess liquid has evaporated and the kumquat peels are soft.
The jam is ready when it wrinkles as you pull your fingertip through a half a teaspoons worth of jam cooled on an ice cold plate.
Place a small glass saucer into the freezer before you start the jam making process. This will ensure that you can do a successful wrinkle test near the end of cooking time.
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