Kumquat, the traditional product of Corfu: Kumquat is a small-sized fruit that has been a staple of Corfu for many decades! Originating in China, the name Kumquat means “golden orange” in Chinese since it is a member of the citrus family and its exterior reminds everyone of an oval-shaped orange.
It is mainly cultivated in northern Corfu, whereas most trees are located in Nymfes Village, known for being the center of Greece’s kumquat production. Furthermore, it is widely believed to have been brought over by the British during the mid-1800s and was popularized by the botanist Sidney Merlin in the 1920s when he brought it over to his estate in Corfu, along with the Washington Navel oranges (now domestically known as Merlin oranges).
Kumquat trees can reach heights upwards of three meters, whereas this fruit has a distinct taste, combining sweet and sour citrus flavors! Distinguished as a PDO product, kumquat is famously made into a quality liqueur drink, though it is also extensively used in desserts, spoon sweets, jam, jelly, and various candies! This fruit can also be used to create perfumes or serve as an in-house decoration, due to its long period of durability when dried out!
Being a source of multiple vitamins, antioxidants, and nutrients, kumquat is picked during the spring and summertime since its leaves need large amounts of sunlight to properly blossom!