Inside Out

February 1, 2012

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I stepped out on the porch today – freshly showered after a hard cycle class – and realized it was warmer outside than it was inside. I think our heat is set on 68 – and my computer says it’s 70 out there, so it’s no wonder! It’s especially pleasant when the sun is shining, which is less and less as the clock ticks. I am going to LIVE on this porch this spring and summer!

For lunch I made an egg + cheese sandwich on Dakota. This was outstanding!!

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I think it was my extra sharp cheddar.

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Have you ever had a kumquat?

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I’ve heard about them and seen them, but I’d never tried one until I found them front and center at the grocery store last week. The first one I ate, I peeled. Because the peel just didn’t seem edible. It wasn’t that great. Then they sat on my counter for 5 days. Today I decided to incorporate them into lunch and I had a gut feeling I wasn’t supposed to peel them. After a quick Google search, I found that you are supposed to eat the skin.

Excited about a new flavor – hopefully sweet and succulent – I put a whole one in my mouth.

My gosh – burst of BITTER + SOUR! It definitely tasted like I was eating a mini orange, skin and all. It kind of grew on me for a bit, but I couldn’t finish the bowl. They weren’t all that different from those Warheads I used to eat in the 90s. Perhaps this batch was just off!?

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A bit of veg on the side – carrots + Wild Squirrel PB.

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We planned this porch for computers – outlets on both sides! I’m all set up and blogging outdoors. Hoping to work for a few hours and hoping the chill stays off the air.

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Please share your kumquat experiences!!

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{ 111 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jenn@slim-shoppin February 1, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Ha! I just posted about eating a kumkwat last week for the first time and I didn’t know how to eat it either, and I saw a You Tube video – so I ate the whole thing. I loved it!

Great looking lunch there too!

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2 Hope @ With A Side Of Hope February 1, 2012 at 1:53 pm

I love egg and cheese sandwiches. They are the best! Your porch looks so beautiful. Its the perfect place to be during weather like this :)

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3 Kel@thekelshow February 1, 2012 at 1:54 pm

I am not a kumquat fan! Too bitter for me!

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4 Susan February 1, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Kumquats are supposed to be sour on the inside and sweet on the outside. Eating them whole is a must … if you peel them and only eat the inside you will be very sad.

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5 Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio February 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Egg sandwiches are the best!!

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6 Karen February 1, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Kumquats are indeed are a peculiar taste experience…I don’t really dislike them, yet they never make their way into my grocery cart either.

Porch envy :)

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7 Dom February 1, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I just purchased some kumquats from the store for my daughter’s states fair project. We love them here even though they are quite bitter.

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8 Susan H. @ The Food Allergy Chronicles February 1, 2012 at 2:02 pm

Sad to say, I do not have a kumquat experience. Will definitely keep my eye out for them as I am now very intrigued! Extra sharp cheddar and egg…oh my!

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9 Kinley @ Better Off Barefoot February 1, 2012 at 2:04 pm

I’ve never been able to eat a kumquat because I had the most awful teacher in 3rd grade who used to eat them ALL THE TIME and to this day, they have negative connotations because of that! LOL!!

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10 Cm @ Lazy Healthy February 1, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Is that green bracelet a fitness stats tracker of some sort?

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11 KathEats February 1, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Haha no it’s a USB drive that is a bracelet too!

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12 Cm @ Lazy Healthy February 1, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Oh! Also very handy. I was just wondering because it kind of looks like the new nike tracker bracelet I was reading about… I think I’ll stick with my garmin though.

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13 Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction February 1, 2012 at 2:06 pm

That sandwich looks amazing! You take great pictures :)

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14 Kori February 1, 2012 at 2:07 pm

I only just tried kumquats last December, and I like them for the most part (I definitely love citrus fruits!), but they do tend to become a bit too much after eating a small bowl. I think they would make a great compote, jam, or pie filling, though!

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15 Susy February 1, 2012 at 2:09 pm

I love Kumquats! When we visited Spain I bought a huge bag from the Farmers Market. I must have eaten several pounds of them over our 4 day trip.

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16 Jessie February 1, 2012 at 2:14 pm

I love kumquats! Usually the round ones are sweeter and have a thinner peel, so they taste less bitter. The plant symbolizes good luck in China, so a lot of families have little kumquat trees in the house for chinese new year.
I’ve also seen people make syrups and jams with it.

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17 Erin February 1, 2012 at 2:23 pm

The weather in NC is beautiful too!! I love this warm January :)
I have never tried Kumquats. I am a little scared to eat them after your review, but they are so cute!

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18 Lindsay @ Running the Windy City February 1, 2012 at 2:25 pm

I love kumquats but they are pretty sour. I usually can only eat a small handful at a time!

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19 Jess February 1, 2012 at 2:25 pm

My fiance bought kumquats as an impulse purchase once because they were funny looking (ugh, boys)… neither of us really liked them, but I made this Kumquat Quinoa Salad and it was GREAT!
http://jessfuel.com/2011/03/02/kumquat-quinoa-salad/

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20 Mary May 7, 2012 at 7:13 pm

I’m a kumquat fan and have been looking for recipes. This looks great. Must try it.

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21 natasha February 1, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Can’t do kumquats. Too bitter AND sour! Blech!

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22 kathleen @ the daily crumb February 1, 2012 at 2:31 pm

i can’t believe you keep your house at 68!! i would freeze.

never had kumquat — loving reading these experiences!

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23 Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) February 1, 2012 at 2:32 pm

I tried kumquats about 8 years ago from my dad’s business partner. He grew them. Very sweet & sour!

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24 eliza February 1, 2012 at 2:32 pm

i dont like them – they are totally sour! but fun to eat.

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25 Jana @ Newly Wife Healthy Life February 1, 2012 at 2:33 pm

I love egg and cheese sandwiches for lunch, more so than I do for breakfast! :-)

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26 Michelle (Better with Berries) February 1, 2012 at 2:36 pm

I’ve never had kumquat either! Which is a shame since my boyfriend worked in the product department all through college. I love that you put outlets for your computers on the porch! I can’t wait until I’m “grown up” and have a house of my own to plan fun improvements.

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27 Christine @ Oatmeal Bowl February 1, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Yes, I will take some Dakota please. :)

I am having a love affair with mandarins, right now. Granted, my CSA shipment contains a lot of them to keep me happy. But they are so tasty.

You’re supposed to eat the skin and all? don’t know if I could do that with a kumquat.

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28 Nikki T February 1, 2012 at 2:39 pm

I just have to say that I am so jealous of your porch!!!

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29 Grace @ Healthy Dreaming February 1, 2012 at 2:41 pm

We eat kumquats a lot in Taiwan especially during the new year. I guess I’m used to the taste but apparently some people only eat the skin!

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30 Kelly February 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm

You’re right, you’re not supposed to peel them. In fact, the peel is my favorite part! The peel, in my experience, is sugary sweet and the inside is VERY SOUR. I’m not a huge fan, honestly.

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31 Jennifer February 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm

I’ve only had a kumquat once….once because I don’t plan to eat it again. ;)

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32 Jessica February 1, 2012 at 2:45 pm

I have never had a kumquat.
Your lunch looks SO good! I LOVE carrots with peanut butter!

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33 Rachel February 1, 2012 at 2:48 pm

I’ve only ever seen kumquats used for their zest. It seem so strange to me that they’re meant to be eaten whole! I don’t know that I could eat a citrus rind, but maybe I’ll pick a few up to try!

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34 Amanda February 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm

I just recently bought a couple of cartons of kumquats. Some are definitely sweeter than others and you never quite know if you’re going to get a really sour one! I used mine to make some lower-fat kumquat scones that turned out great (recipe on my blog)! I highly recommend baking with them!

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35 Katie @ Peace Love and Oats February 1, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Haha now I want to try a kumquat! They are so going on My grocery list!

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36 Sarah February 1, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Kumquats are sweet and tart! Your experience was completely normal. Think of them as unprocessed marmalade. ;)

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37 Lauren @ What Lauren Likes February 1, 2012 at 3:03 pm

Great lunch! I’ve never tried those before! Haha :)

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38 Liz @ Tip Top Shape February 1, 2012 at 3:07 pm

I’ve heard that kumquats are pretty bitter. Never tried them myself, but I don’t think I would like them!

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39 Jasper @ crunchylittlebites February 1, 2012 at 3:08 pm

I’ve no kumquat experience, however I did used to pick quinces (have you heard of quince?) from my “secret hiding spot (that everybody knew about)” in the backyard and use them for batting practice..not eating…grandma said they’d poison me…I digress to say that your kumquats made me all nostalgic, I guess! :) thanks for the post, I know I’m weird!

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40 Jen February 1, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Never heard of them before. Gah – that weather is glorious! I must say, you have fully brought back my love for sandwiches. They keep things simple and wholesome :)

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41 Johanna B February 1, 2012 at 3:10 pm

I’ve never had a kumquat. They do sound intriguing so perhaps I’ll try some if I see them in the store. Doubt that I’d go hunting for them.

Am envious of your porch. I have one but it’s not as nice as yours. I spent most of the weekend outside. I’m glad I did cuz by Friday it’s supposed to be wintery.

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42 Jenny February 1, 2012 at 3:11 pm

I have so been meaning to try kumquats, but just never have. But if they are anything like warheads, I’m all in!

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43 jacklyn February 1, 2012 at 3:17 pm

HiI
Love that you keep your house temp @ 68 degrees. Here in Texas we keep it @ 67 degrees before the heater kicks in.
We eat something like kumquats but we call it calamansi. We make it into a beverage like lemonade. (skin included) We also use it like a lemon. We have a dish in the Philippines called pancit (noodles) that we like to squeeze kumquat (calamansi) in.

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44 Jules @ La Petite Maison Verte February 1, 2012 at 3:28 pm

That sandwich looks SO good! I didn’t like kumquats when I tried them by themselves (too sour/bitter, like you said) but they are so cute – like tiny little oranges!

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45 Kathryn from Schoolmarmstyle February 1, 2012 at 3:30 pm

I am so jealous of almost everything in this post: The porch, the sandwich, the amazing warmth, the post-workout bliss. I am not however jealous of the kumquat. I ate one once as a teenager and have not yet gotten over the experience. Yuck!

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46 Lisa (bakebikeblog) February 1, 2012 at 3:34 pm

What a glorious blogging locatioN!

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47 Cait's Plate February 1, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Oh that sandwich just looks ABSOLUTELY perfect.

I’ve actually never had a kumquat if you can believe it! I gotta change that!

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48 Sarah February 1, 2012 at 3:43 pm

My dad used to eat kumquats whole while he rode his bicycle…now I do the same, I pop them in and keep them there until they dissolve.

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49 Becca February 1, 2012 at 3:44 pm

PB on carrots?!?! Seems odd to me …but PB on celery is good, so I bet it tastes similar!

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50 Aimee February 1, 2012 at 3:57 pm

Don’t knock it til you try it! That’s how I get my kids to eat carrots! (My sister thinks it’s so weird :)

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51 Cathy February 1, 2012 at 3:55 pm

Kumquats are on the trees here in the houston area. My grand kids eat them all the time.
Love your porch Kath.

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52 Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs February 1, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Great thinking with the outlets on both sides — nothing worse than being limited by outlet placement! :)

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53 deva at deva by definition February 1, 2012 at 4:00 pm

I’ve seen the little boxes of kumquats at the grocery store but haven’t picked any up. Lately I’ve been all about the clementines!

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54 Logan February 2, 2012 at 11:12 am

Me too!

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55 Emily February 1, 2012 at 4:03 pm

ah i had a kumquat for the first time just a couple of weeks ago! i was looking at them curiously in the store, so i asked one of the workers “how” you eat them and he said skin and all! so when i got back home i immediately tried one…i didnt necessarily LIKE it but i didnt HATE it either…its hard for me to get over eating the peel when for so many other things im used to peeling it right off! so i kept trying a few throughout the course of the day to see if they’d grow on me…and eh. i decided i could live without em :) but they are nice to change things a bit with!

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56 jessica February 1, 2012 at 4:07 pm

i LOVE kumquats. i’ve been eating them since i was a younin’. I like them raw, dried, and in tea. When I’m feeling a bit under the weather, I boil it in water for a few min and add honey. So yummy!

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57 Angela @ Happy Fit Mama February 1, 2012 at 4:07 pm

I was really excited about trying kumquats for the first time. The container said to eat the peel so I did. Weird texture and intense sour taste. Not a fan!

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58 Allie (Live Laugh Eat) February 1, 2012 at 4:10 pm

I loooooove kumquats!! They are usually rather sweet. You must’ve gotten a bad batch. Must try again!

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59 Marty February 1, 2012 at 4:18 pm

I love kumquats! They are supposed to be tangy and a bit bitter, like marmalade. If you don’t like them whole, you can slice them into thin slices (peel and all) to throw into a fruit salad. They can be candied whole too if you like them sweet.

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60 Christa February 1, 2012 at 4:30 pm

There used to always be a box of kumquats in the hall outside the jury rooms when I was going my undergrad voice degree — one of the teachers swore by their ability to clear phlem which is obviously bad for singing. I never tried one, but they were there every semester, so I’m guessing they worked for some people!

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61 Julia February 1, 2012 at 4:33 pm

Kumquats are very sweet and sour. They should not be all bitter though!

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62 Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning February 1, 2012 at 4:35 pm

I’m obsessed with kumquats, thanks to a visit to my in-laws in Florida a few weeks ago. I talked about them (the kumquats) here: http://oatmealafterspinning.com/2012/01/16/still-side-lined-in-florida-day-2/ and on the post before that.
My in-laws have a SWEET kumquat tree in their yard, and their neighbors have a SOUR one. The shapes are slightly different (sweet ones are more round, sour are oval). I like both, but definitely prefer the sweet! I probably ate (literally) 100 kumquats over that weekend, and took a huge bag home. The neighbors also grew tangerines, oranges, grapefruit and LIMEQUATS!! (Limequats taste exactly like a regular size lime. Don’t just go popping one in your mouth like I did. :))

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63 Anne P February 1, 2012 at 4:38 pm

You should try my Zesty Kumquat Quinoa Salad. It’s SO GOOD!

http://www.fannetasticfood.com/recipes/zesty-kumquat-quinoa-salad/

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64 Tiffany February 1, 2012 at 4:42 pm

I remember in pre-school my playground was next to a kumquat tree and during recess we would beg the adults to pick the kumquats off the tree and give them to us to eat. I haven’t had one since! But I remember I really enjoyed them lol

Lunch looks amazing! I made an eggplant, spinach and cucumber sandwich on sesame bread spread with mmm sauce for lunch can’t wait to eat it! :)

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65 Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga February 1, 2012 at 4:44 pm

I have never understood people that can just bite into and eat kumquats. I think they are sour, bitter, and just…too tough for me. And I’ve had “the best” ones; locally grown, seasonal, in my CSA box in San Diego, picked from neighbor’s trees, from the grocery store, I’ve tried. They are just too sour for me! I tried making kumquat marmalade/jam with them, too. A bit better but just not my thing. I wish I could love them b/c they’re so cute :)

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66 Sydney@ Nutrition with Sydney February 1, 2012 at 4:50 pm

Love the warm weather!

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67 The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh February 1, 2012 at 4:53 pm

And now I must find kumquats! You know I actually used to see them quite frequently about 10 years ago but now I rarely see them at all. Hmm…and I don’t know if I could eat the skin…unless I REALLY needed fiber that day!

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68 Hannah @ Eat, Drink and Save Money February 1, 2012 at 5:05 pm

I have not had kumquats in ages. Growing up we used to eat them right off the tree. I remember them being sweet enough to cancel out the sour. I wonder if yours were picked too early.

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69 Janine M February 1, 2012 at 5:05 pm

I don’t like kumquats either! My neighbors have a kumquat tree that hangs over our fence, and they don’t mind me picking them, but since I don’t like them, and the few branches produce SOOO many, I pick a big bowl full and put them out at work for everyone!

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70 Lara F. February 1, 2012 at 5:26 pm

I love kumquats. The ones I’ve had are sweet and sour, but more sweet than sour. Try them in season (whenever that is, I don’t know…) and hopefully they will be better!… PS. I love the word “kumquat.”

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71 Christena February 1, 2012 at 10:03 pm

Hahaha. I think “kumquat” sounds like a vulgar word. :) Apparently I’m a 12 year old boy at heart.

Besides that, I’ve never tried one!

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72 Ally February 1, 2012 at 5:53 pm

A fetus is the size of a kumquat at 10 weeks!! Are you trying to tell us something??

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73 KathEats February 1, 2012 at 9:38 pm

haha – no hidden messages!

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74 Lizzie February 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm

The time I most enjoyed kumquats was when a neighbour bought me a small bag of frozen ones while I was working in the garden on a hot summer day. So refreshing!

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75 alain February 1, 2012 at 6:03 pm

hi kath! my family had a kumquat bush in our yard and they were one of my favorite fruits to enjoy! we ONLY ate the peel as that is the sweet, refreshing part of the fruit. The insides are much too sour and hurt my teeth! hope this helps!

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76 Hilary February 1, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Kath you did not get a bad batch… kumquats are always gross. hahahaha
Love your blog!

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77 Molly@RDexposed February 1, 2012 at 6:44 pm

My childhood home had a screened in porch that we practically lived on during the summer. Best camp out spot!

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78 Megan February 1, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Blogging outdoors is the BEST!

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79 Taryn February 1, 2012 at 8:20 pm

Hi Kath, I have a problem with over snacking on junk food. Any advice?

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80 KathEats February 1, 2012 at 9:38 pm

Can you get the junk food out of your house? If you only have wholesome food to begin with, making better snack choices is easier

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81 Taryn February 1, 2012 at 10:08 pm

Sadly no, I live with a large family, also I have a bit of a sweet tooth. Any healthy sweets you know of? Chocolate is a favorite :-)

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82 Anne February 1, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Are you eating enough of the right foods at meals? Maybe it would help if you look at the nutrient profile of your meals and their ability to sustain you so you’re not hungry for snacks….

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83 KathEats February 2, 2012 at 9:43 am

I agree with Anne – if you’re eating big (as in voluminous, not caloric), filling meals that incorporate the 3 food groups, there is less desire to snack. If you can’t remove the junk food, you can still focus on having your favorite health foods in stock more of the time. Greek yogurt with a tsp of cocoa powder might help with the chocolate fix.

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84 Taryn February 2, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Thank you both! I had oatmeal this morning (a favorite of mine thanks to Kath) but I made it on the stove vs in the microwave and it was so much more volume I could only eat half my sandwich and some grapes for lunch. And the only snack was an apple. And the yogurt idea sounds amazing :-)

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85 Laurel February 1, 2012 at 8:38 pm

I was taught to cut kumquats in half and squeeze out the juice. The inside is the sour bit, so removing some of the juice lets you taste the sweet skin.

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86 betty February 1, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Ditto on the kumquat experience. Yuck!

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87 Stacy @ Say It With Sprinkles February 1, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Your egg & cheese sammy looks awesome!

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88 Laura Jane @ Recovering Chocoholic February 1, 2012 at 9:09 pm

I tried kumquats once on a whim. I had to research to find out you were supposed to eat the skin. You wouldn’t think it’s edible. I thought they were okay, but not great. I don’t think I finished all of them.

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89 Kris February 1, 2012 at 9:09 pm

I keep thinking if I try kumquats again I’ll like them, but I don’t — too bitter. Just seems like chewing on orange rind. And I see them all over the place here in FL.

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90 Sandra February 1, 2012 at 9:16 pm

Years ago my Mum made a batch of kumquats in liquor. They were so potent but very nice with vanilla icecream and a sprinkle of icing sugar, about the only way I have eaten them.
Your porch is lovely Kath.

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91 Rebekah February 1, 2012 at 9:21 pm

I love kumquats! I find the skin to be sweet, not bitter, and the sweet skin balances out the sour interior. My kids love them too. Perhaps you did get a bad batch?

I love the idea of carrots with nut butter, for some reason I’ve never thought of doing that! Looks delish.

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92 Amelia February 1, 2012 at 9:24 pm

I love phrases like “please share your kumquat experiences” — only in food blogger world do we hear (and say) things like this :)

My favorite thing to do with kumquats is cook them down in a braised meat dish. If you saute some veggies then add kumquats, olives, herbs, wine, and broth and braise some chicken in this mixture for an hour or two, you get the most amazingly flavorful dish — great served over noodles or rice!

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93 Kim @ Spoonful of Sass February 1, 2012 at 9:42 pm

I also tried kumquats recently, and yuck! Bitter and a bit too much to chew with the skin. I was very disappointed and sadly most of mine went in the trash. :(

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94 Molly February 1, 2012 at 9:50 pm

they are a little like sour warhead candy, only in fruit form. they’re better cut up as a flavor accent, like in a quinoa dish or a salad, rather than eaten whole like a snack.

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95 Heidi - Apples Under My Bed February 1, 2012 at 9:56 pm

We have a kumquat tree! I never eat them plain, so bitter!! We tend to make marmalade, jam etc
Heidi xo

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96 bitt February 1, 2012 at 10:13 pm

kumquat tree? jealous!

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97 bitt February 1, 2012 at 10:12 pm

I just got into kumquats this winter too. I love them! Try putting one into a smoothie–it will knock your socks off. That is if you still believe in smoothies…

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98 KathEats February 2, 2012 at 9:43 am

Of course I still believe in smoothies!!

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99 Anne February 1, 2012 at 10:59 pm

I’ve only ever had kumquats twice: once steeped with sugar to make a sweet dessert tea (I had this in Taiwan) and another time candied from a specialty foods store – the tea was outstanding! (I found a recipe for you: http://eatingchina.com/recipes/kumquat-tea.htm). The candied kumquats, on the other hand, were pretty unremarkable…. Too hard and sticky and sour for my taste.

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100 Khushboo February 1, 2012 at 11:19 pm

I haven’t tried kumquats but I recently tried a permisson..not a fan!

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101 Michelle @ Esculent Dreams February 2, 2012 at 12:13 am

My family loves kumquats but they all think I’m weird because I like the flesh of the fruit, not the skin…haha!

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102 Kiran @ KiranTarun.com February 2, 2012 at 1:56 am

I think it depends on the freshness and quality of kumquats — I’ve eaten whole and it’s not too tart :)

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103 Lynna February 2, 2012 at 6:19 am

I grew up in SoCal…Grandma had a kumquat tree…peel is very sweet, innards VERY sour…interesting mouth sensation, but only a couple at a time. P.S. I used to occasionally pack them in Katy Widrick’s lunches…ask her about kumquats!

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104 Floey February 2, 2012 at 7:35 am

Just curious as to what type of laptop you use! :)

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105 KathEats February 2, 2012 at 9:43 am

We are an HP family. I got that one when I went back to school in 2008 and it’s still chugging hard.

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106 Charise February 2, 2012 at 7:57 am

I’ve tried kumquats a few times, and just can’t get behind them. They’re too bitter for me!

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107 Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count February 2, 2012 at 8:15 am

I remember eating kumquats when I was a child. One of my Aunts gave them to me. I think I liked them, but it was a long time ago.

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108 Angel7 February 2, 2012 at 8:43 am

I have never tried kumquats, and do not think I would like them–especially after your experience. But you never know… Maybe someday I will try them and like them.

http://faithfulsolutions.blogspot.com/

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109 Amy @ A Little Nosh February 2, 2012 at 1:33 pm

I think that’s how kumquats are supposed to taste. I had one in Arizona that my brother picked off a tree in his backyard. Even fresh off a tree I didn’t care for it.

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110 Sonya February 2, 2012 at 2:19 pm

As a lover of Kumquats, they are not all bitter and sour!! Let them sit out for a few more days and they’ll be a delightful sweet/sour treat. Not so much on the sour. I’d call it an acquired taste and probably one of those Umami-type things. Yum!

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111 ~Christy February 3, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Loving the porch from afar — and your sammy, too! Mmmmm!

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