The way I see it swearing is totally acceptable in certain situations, if not encouraged. In some cases this might be after getting a paper cut or when your computer inexplicably crashes. It might be finding out that that new camera you purchased last week is now on sale for a unheard of low price of sweet-mother-f***er-if-I-only-waited-a-week. These are all good times to swear up a storm so harsh that nearby children cry, Lovecraftian gods are summoned, adults suffer spontaneous nosebleeds, and paint curls off the walls.
Another good time for colorful language like this is when you realize all the canning you did in the last year - the jams, jellys, pickles, tinctures, and liquors - have all been destroyed. Not only were these little homemade delicacies for your enjoyment, but they existed as Christmas and birthday gifts for friends and family. All now gone.
That, dear readers, is a damn good reason to curse like a rebellious Catholic school girl.
The day I realized this particular loss I began to swear at the fire like a madman. I used the word "asshole" more than a bunch of proctologists at a rectal convention. Seriously, it wasn't pretty.
However, one can only swear so much before finally getting over oneself and fixing the problem.
Luckily, here in California, it's the peak of kumquat season and the local kumquat tree is in total hardcore bloom. The green branches are so emblazoned with huge orange clusters of what have to be the biggest kumquats I've ever seen that they're beginning to sag and break.
A perfect time to start preserving and pickling and jamming once again. Candied kumquats, kumquat salsa, and pickled kumquats... they're all being churned out here and being canned as fast as my little hands can put them together.
However, I've added a new kumquat recipe to my repertoire. These piquant citrus fruits are being preserved this time, the same way you might preserve a lemon. The end result will be fragrant, floral, bits of kumquat that can grace the most delicate baked fish, layered into a grilled cheese, or diced into a salad.
As one who doesn't own a lemon tree and therefore isn't "burdened" (who are you kidding lemon tree owners?) with an overabundance of fruit it's a nice alternative. Quirky and unique - it sets my kitchen and dishes apart from others and is a fine way to begin restocking the larder.
The below is a rough recipe. It's easy enough that you can just toss it together so don't fret about making it or specifics. I made a a few jars in a few sizes and basically kept going until I ran out of kumquats.
lemon juice (about 2 lemons worth for every 1/2 pint jar)
Spices (optional; I used peppercorns, a bay leaf, and a cinnamon stick)
1. Place a tablespoon of salt at the bottom of a sterilized jar.
2. One by one, prepare the kumquats in the following way. Pick off any protruding stems, then cut the kumquats as if you were going to cut them in half lengthwise, starting from the tip, but do not cut all the way. Keep the kumquat attached at the base. Make another cut in a similar manner, so now the lemon is quartered, but again, attached at the base. (These were big kumquats, smaller ones you should only have to cut once.)
3. Pack the inside of the kumquat generously with salt.
4. Pack the kumquats in the jar, squishing them down so that juice is extracted. Fill up the jar with kumquats. Add the lemon juice to top them off and add an extra few tablespoons of salt.
5. Seal the jar and let sit at room temperature for a couple days. Turn the jar upside down occasionally. Put in refrigerator and let sit, again turning upside down occasionally, for at least 2 weeks.
6. To use wash off the excess salt and use as needed. Store for up to 6 months.
Kumquat trees (grow very well in cold climates) - Four Winds Growers
Candied Kumquats - Simply Recipes
Kumquat Salsa - Simply Recipes