In late winter, citrus is a popular theme in my kitchen. It’s the time of year when I am able to get a wonderful selection of citrus fruits in season, including these lovely little, seed-filled, bright orange kumquats. Kumquats burst with tart flavour on the palate, and you can make them into marmalade, savoury chutneys, sauces and even desserts. This year some beautiful organic kumquats sent me looking for inspiration, and I chose Indian flavours for a kumquat cumin pickle.
Chef Atul Kochhar, in his beautiful cookbook Benares, mentions he likes to serve a kumquat pickle with scallops and parsnips, a combination which sounds totally wonderful. Inspired by Atul, here is my cultured kumquat cumin pickle, which has probiotic goodness in every bite. Dates add a touch of sweetness to balance the tart kumquats, and you can serve it chunky or smooth – see 2nd tip.
I hope you’ll enjoy this delicious winter condiment as much as we do. Try it with Indian meals, roast vegetables, barbeques, a cheese board or a charcuterie platter. Mix a spoonful into mayonnaise for a sandwich, add some to a gravy – it’s lovely with duck, or stir some into hummus. I’d love to hear your ideas – post them in the comments below this recipe!
This recipe is suitable for Thermomix TM6, TM5 and TM31.
- Toast cumin seeds 5 min/Varoma/speed spoon, then remove TM lid and Measuring Cup and dry underside of both with a paper towel; leave TM bowl uncovered for 5-10 minutes to allow any moisture on the TM bowl to evaporate.
- Grind toasted cumin seeds 30 sec/speed 10.
- Add dates and kumquats, then chop 30 sec/speed 4½.
- Add water and vinegar, scrape down sides of TM bowl with spatula, then cook 30 min/100°C/speed spoon. Remove TM lid, set TM bowl on countertop (bench) and cool pickle to room temperature.
- Add whey or kombucha and stir 30 sec/speed 2 – see 2nd tip to create a smooth texture if preferred. Transfer to a sterilised glass jar and close with a sterilised lid. Leave to culture naturally at room temperature 5 (or up to 24) hours, then serve and enjoy, or chill in fridge for up to one month.