Saturday, February 20, 2010

Kumquat Virgin

I went food shopping today and noticed Trader Joe's had kumquats. $2.99 for 12 oz. seemed like a good deal, but what would I know, being a kumquat virgin? My curiosity had been piqued by watching Muppet Babies as a child, but I'd always assumed they were just something invented by Jim Henson, like the weirdo species. Advertised as being entirely edible with sweet skin and tart flesh, that was a definite selling point, as opposed to pomegranates, which I love, but am always surprised when the waste seems to have more mass than the original fruit. Kumquats are about the size of cherry tomatoes, so just looking at them quickly in the store, I imagined them tasting something like a sweet tomato. When I got home and opened the plastic container, I gave the fruits a sniff. They smelled like oranges and examining them closer, appeared to have a similar texture. After popping off the green caps, I washed a few and decided to feast. I hesitantly bit into the skin, which sort of tasted like oranges, but sweeter, a decent first taste. I bit into the fruit flesh to find it orange-like, but sort of like if you dipped an orange in something even more acidic, like I don't know, maybe HCl. It wasn't gag-inducing, but it wasn't super-pleasant either. As I took my second fleshy bite, I hit something hard. A fucking seed. Two actually. And that's where kumquats seem like a waste; their seeds are the same size as orange seeds. Having said all this, I think I ate seven in one sitting.

Pros: Fun name. Fun size. Entirely edible minus the seeds.
Cons: Big seeds. Sour as a mother. Fairly expensive now knowing the taste.
Verdict: Try them for the experience if you must. Otherwise, best used in Scrabble: Kumquat will get you 72 points with no premium squares!

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