This cumquat jam recipe is really easy and quick and tastes delicious unlike some kumquat marmalade recipes that can be quite tricky, fiddly and time-consuming especially when using fruit with seeds.
This citrus jam is sure to impress.
Easiest ever cumquat jam recipe
What is the difference between kumquat jam and kumquat marmalade?
I’m clearly not sure because I called this a jam and every recipe I can find calls it a marmalade.
It seems to be that a marmalade uses the peel of a citrus fruit and jam uses the whole fruit – like berries.
The jury is still out.
What I do know is that I made a cumquat jam/marmalade from my homegrown cumquats and it is delicious.
I first made this a few years ago and my grandmother rang me after sampling her jar to tell me it was the best cumquat jam she’d ever had.
Now yes she may be biased but my grandma was always pretty obvious. If she didn’t like something you could tell and I didn’t get a hint of it.
Not only does it taste amazing but it’s one of the easies recipe for cumquat jam that I’ve come across.
What are cumquats?
A cumquat (or kumquat) is a small citrus fruit with edible peel about the size of a grape.
They’re a great one to grow at home as the trees can produce a lot of fruit in a small space.
What makes this cumquat recipe so simple?
You don’t even have to take the pips out!
In the past I’ve rejected any recipe that involved taking the pips out of the tiny little fruit.
For larger citrus like oranges it’s not too hard but cumquats – now that is a process I can’t be bothered with.
For this recipe you simply quarter, soak, boil, sweeten, boil, bottle (I summarise).
It really is that easy.
Saturday night I chopped them up, Sunday I boiled it all up, popped it in some jars and decorated them.
It literally took just over an hour total time (not including the over-night soak).
My grandma was most impressed with the colour.
She said most cumquat jams she had tried were almost brown, not vibrant orange like this one.
Maybe it’s the homegrown fruit?
Whatever it was, I was a bit proud.
A few common cumquat jam-making questions:
Now jam isn’t always the easiest thing ever to make. You probably have a few questions so hopefully the information below can answer all your questions.
Do you need to sterilise the jars for making jam?
If you’re planning on keeping your jam at room temperature for a period of time or really even if you want to keep it in the fridge it’s recommended you sterilise your jars to kill any bacteria that might be lurking.
There are a few methods out there but for me, I wash my jars in hot soapy water then put them on an oven tray and ‘bake’ at 100C fan-forced until they are dry.
Do you let jam cool before bottling?
No, jam needs to be jarred when it is hot hot hot and have the lid put on right away. The heat stops any bacteria from getting in and creates a seal in the jar.
If you’re going to be making jam more than a couple of times, I recommend getting some jam-making tools.
I have a little stainless steel funnel, a jar-holder (they’re like camp tongs with a rubber end on them) and another similar thing that holds the jar while you screw the lid on so you don’t burn your fingers.
Can you remove the seeds before cooking the jam?
I like this jam because I don’t have to remove the seeds but if you do want to, make sure you keep them, wrap them up in a little bit of muslin cloth and then put them in the pot with the fruit while it cooks.
The seeds contain pectin and that is what helps the jam to set.
Can you use different types of sugar?
I personally have only used the one type of sugar for this recipe but others have successfully made it using other sugars.
Keep in mind different types of sugar have been processed differently so may take longer to cook or may brown more quickly.
Even if you use white sugar, it will brown when it gets to a certain temperature.
What are some other kumquat recipe ideas?
Cumquats can be used in sweet and savoury recipes for everything from marinades to cookies.
My cumquat melting moments are quite delicious.
You can also use cumquats for:
- Marinades and sauces (they’d be delicious in ham baste)
- Sliced in salads (fruit or leafy green) – they can be eaten with the skin on
- Added to stuffing for roast meats
- Baked into breads
- Puréed or sliced for dessert toppings
- As garnish
- Sliced and steeped in boiling water for tea – or dehydrated to make a tea mix.
p.s.If you’re using recycled jars, I have a little tutorial for how to remove the labels without ruining your fingernails (you’ll also get a bonus tutorial for making pretty labels in less than 5 minutes without having to buy anything).
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- 1 kg cumquats
- 5 cups water
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 5 cups raw sugar
- Wash the cumquats and cut them into quarters.
- Place in a bowl, add the water and cover the bowl then set aside over night.
- Pour the water and cumquats into a large saucepan, stir in the lemon juice and bring it to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer for 30 minutes or until the cumquats are soft.
- Add the sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves then bring to a boil and continue to cook on high, uncovered and without stirring for 20 minutes or until the jam has reached setting point.
- To test if it's ready, place a small plate in the fridge. Spoon a little jam onto the plate and put it back in the fridge for a few minutes.
- Run your finger through the middle and if the jam stays separated then it is set.
- When the jam is ready take it off the heat for 10 minutes and carefully scoop out any pips you can see.
- Divide between sterilised jars and seal them up.