Kum­quat Atchar:



This is a deli­cious, spicy jam that goes well with cheese and cur­ries. It keeps for weeks in the fridge and makes a won­der­ful gift. Kum­quats, at the moment, are in most of the super­mar­kets and are really reas­on­ably priced (R10 a bag at Checkers!).



I love mak­ing this pre­serve for three reas­ons (1). It is so simple: requires basic kit­chen equip­ment and basic cook­ing skills. (2). It uses ingredi­ents that are easy to find and inex­pens­ive (3). You can eat it straight away (after it has cooled that is); although it does get bet­ter with age (the spices get a chance to mingle more) it is nice, how­ever, to be able to eat some­thing the day you’ve made it.


I made it in the day and had it with cheese that even­ing. It also goes superbly with cur­ries, my boy­friend and I enjoyed this kum­quat atchar with a Chicken Tikka and Dahl I made. The sweet­ness com­ple­men­ted the spices in the cur­ries and the spices in both dishes didn’t clash.


This is my first preserve/jam/atchar I have made and it will not be the last – I have already star­ted col­lect­ing jam jars for all the won­der­ful pre­serve recipes out there.


Kum­quat Atchar:


300g kum­quats (about 30)

½ cup of white wine vinegar

¾ cup sugar

3 clove gar­lic, sliced into slivers

¼ tsp salt

1 tsp chopped chillies

½ tbls can­ola oil

1 tbls chopped coriander


Pan spices:


1 tsp mus­tard seeds

6 curry leaves, torn or lightly crushed (fresh or dried)

1 tsp ses­ame seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds


Rinse the kum­quats thor­oughly and dry. Slice each kum­quats in half length­wise and remove all pips.


Place the kum­quats in a medium-sized sauce­pan and add the vin­egar. Heat on high, stir­ring con­stantly until the vin­egar begins to sim­mer. Reduce the heat. Sim­mer uncovered for 3–5 minutes until the kum­quat rind is semi-soft.


Add the sugar and stir until dis­solved. Con­tinue to sim­mer for 10–12 minutes, until the liquid is syr­upy. Pour the con­tents of the sauce­pan into a bowl, add the gar­lic sliv­ers and stir well. Leave the kum­quats to cool for 10 minutes. Add the salt, crushed chil­lies and chopped cori­ander, stir well.


Heat the oil in a small sauce­pan. When hot, add the mus­tard seeds and cumin seeds, stir and allow to sizzle for about 15 seconds. Add the curry leaves and the ses­ame seeds and stir well. Remove form heat, pour over the kum­quats and stir in.


When cool, place kum­quats into a ster­il­ized jar and store in the fridge for sev­eral weeks.






  1. Divine Kristy — I feel like eat­ing this now ;-)


    Kristy Reply:

    Thanks Kate. You must come over and have enjoy some with me!


    Comment by Kate on July 12, 2011 at 4:13 am

  2. Oooooh! Love the idea of mak­ing atchar with kum­quats. One of my favour­ite memor­ies is walk­ing home from school as a kid and pluck­ing (& eat­ing) the kum­quats off of a tree on the route.


    Kristy Reply:

    What a lovely memory. The kum­quat atchar is a great way of using kum­quats with savoury dishes.


    Comment by Marisa on July 13, 2011 at 7:57 am

  3. Hi Kristy,
    Your recipes, enthu­si­asm present­a­tion, atten­tion to detail and love of cook­ing is an inspir­a­tion to me!


    Comment by Jeannie on July 15, 2011 at 4:27 am

  4. […] made some kum­quat atchar from a recipe on the foodmonger’s blog © kumquat […]

    Pingback by In My Kitchen « Lavender and Lime on August 1, 2011 at 3:06 am

  5. ooh I must try this! Whenever I’ve got­ten kumpuat’s I’ve only made kum­quats in syrup. Great for a top­ping on choc pud.


    Comment by karen on August 1, 2011 at 11:38 pm