Preserved Kumquats with Salt

Experiment: Preserved Kumquats with Salt
I never really liked preserved kumquats when I was young, because… they’re REALLY salty.  Little did I know that preserved kumquats with salt is actually REALLY good for your throat.  When my co-worker decided to make her own preserved kumquats last year, I thought… “Oh maybe I should make my own too!”  Yet… when I finally made up my mind to make it, the kumquat season was over.  This year when I saw kumquats in a produce store, I bought it right away to make my own preserved kumquats.

Salt (I use sea salt)
Glass jar

1) Wash the glass jar and the kumquats, air dry the kumquats.
2) Cover the bottom of the glass jar with salt, then put a few kumquats in.
3) Pour salt over the first layer of kumquats, then put the second layer of kumquats in.
4) Just keep on layering salt and kumquats until you reach the top of the jar.  Make sure that the top layer of kumquats is completely covered with salt. 
5) Close the lid and put it in a dark and cool place.  It’ll be ready in a few years.  (Yes!  A few years!)

1) I used coarse sea salt and fine sea salt for this jar… Well… it’s because I ran out of coarse sea salt! 😛  But I think you can use either coarse or fine for preserving kumquats.  (You can sorta see the difference of the course and fine sea salt in the picture above)
2) You can use table salt for this.
3) People say, “The longer you preserve them, the better they’ll be.”  Apprently there are some 50+ years kumquats out there and they’re still edible.  But… do you dare try?
4) Keep an eye on the preserved kumquats.  My other co-worker made a jar, but then later since the kumquats shrank, and the kumquats were exposed to the air… they molded. 

There’s no conclusion yet… since the preserved kumquats won’t be ready til a few years later…

– I think most Hong Kong families have at least a jar at home… so I’m just trying this out.


  1. #1 by soto on January 26, 2010 - 4:30 am

    wow, years??? I definitely do not have that kind of patience. I wonder why it takes so long to make kumquats, but not lemon?

  2. #2 by MiaLamb on January 26, 2010 - 5:55 am

    I actually don't know about preserved lemon… Now you mention it… makes me wanna make preserved lemon too… hehe! Have you tried preserved lemon with 7-uP? It's good!

  3. #3 by ashley lim on March 2, 2011 - 8:21 am

    I want to try making a batch. Your co-worker’s batch molded. How do I ensure that mine won’t mold? Usually people preserve using coarse salt but won’t fine salt reduces the air pockets, thereby reduces the chance of molding?


    • #4 by foodlabasia on March 3, 2011 - 3:25 am

      I talked to my mom, she said my grandma always used fine table salt. My grandma would actually mix the salt with water until saturated first, then put the kamquat in. I have not tried it myself, but if you are adventurous , you can try this method. This way you can ensure that there’s no air pocket. Please let me know the result! 🙂

      Oh and another thing is that, I actually leave a thick layer of salt on top of the kamquat. It helps.

      The salt in my big jar of kamquat still hasn’t dissolved yet… but my mom has been eating the kamquats in the small bottle that I gave her. You can try using small bottles to try out first. 🙂

      Hope it helps! 🙂

  4. #5 by Anthony on October 13, 2012 - 10:53 pm

    Hi there. I followed this recipe and they have been preserving for a month now. Initially, I had a good inch or so of salt covering the top layer of kumquats but after a month, since the water is being drawn out of the kumquats, the layer of salt has not dropped to below the kumquats. The top layer of kumquats now are only half covered by the brine. Is this normal or should I open it again and top the salt up? Since there’s nothing covering the top few kumquats, i’m scared it will start to go moldy.

    • #6 by foodlabasia on August 11, 2013 - 9:06 am

      Sorry for the extremely slow reply. I would top up with salt and make sure there’s no exposed kamquats. Just wondering, what did you do in the end and how did it turn out?

  5. #7 by Raul on August 11, 2013 - 8:52 am

    Ok, so I picked them, washed them dried them and started doing the layering. 3 weeks into it I looked in the pantry and one of the jars is almost full of liquid, and the other 2 are about half full of liquid… What happened? Is this normal?

    • #8 by foodlabasia on August 11, 2013 - 9:04 am

      Yes it’s absolutely normal! In the end the salt will turn to liquid. So don’t worry! 🙂

      • #9 by Raul on September 10, 2013 - 6:33 am

        Oh ok. Thank you. Now for my next question… Do I shake them to mixe everything up, leave them alone?

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