Kumquat Olive Relish Recipe

06.27.11 by Jackie
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Kumquat Olive Relish Recipe Recipe

Mustard and ketchup don't have to be the only condiments on your table. You can make your own that are, dare I say, unique and more flavorful. For example, whenever I serve grilled chicken breasts, tuna or even grilled tofu, I like to enhance the usual bland dish with a flavorful relish. I recently served the relish with Gouda cheese  and crackers. The two pair wonderfully. 

I recently used kumquat marmalade from last winter and mixed it with large, meaty and slightly sweet olives. In addition to imparting a citrus flavor, this olive relish also adds a pleasant texture to the food. Best of all, it can be prepared way in advance.


Servings: about 2 cups
3 tablespoons kumquat marmalade (or any citrus marmalade)
3 tablespoons yuzu juice (see tips)
2 teaspoons sugar cane vinegar (or any white vinegar)
3/4 cup green olives (I used hot chile pitted olives)
1 celery stalk, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
3/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
½ red onion (or shallot for a stronger flavor)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/8 teaspoon salt, depending on the saltiness of the olives
1/8 teaspoon pink, green and black peppercorn medley, freshly cracked
1-½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


Finely dice the red onion. Sprinkle with Kosher salt. Let sit for about 1 hour. Press out and drain all the liquid. Rinse in a water bath, then drain the liquid and pat dry.

Dissolve the kumquat marmalade in yuzu juice and sugar cane vinegar.

Pit (if needed) and coarsely chop the olives.

Place the fennel seeds in a small frying pan and slightly dry toast over medium heat until fragrant. Place seeds in a mixing bowl and combine with the olives, kumquat mixture, red onions, oregano, celery and parsley. Season with salt and the pepper medley. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil. Set aside to marinate.

Adjust seasoning if needed.

Let sit for at least 15 minutes before serving to let all the flavors blend together. Serve at room temperature.

Bon appétit!


I buy yuzu juice at a local Korean/Japanese market. It can also be found online. If you don't have any replace it with freshly squeezed lemon juice.

I bought the hot chile olives at my local Safeway.

If you want to use fresh citrus peels instead of marmalade, peel the skin (it could be an orange, mandarin or any citrus) and gather all the zest. Blanch (dip for a minute in boiling water then transfer to an ice bath). Repeat twice. This helps to lower the bitterness of the fruit. Drain and pat dry the zest with a paper towel. Cut  the zest into long, thin strips (julienne). Place the zest in a small saucepan. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and the  juice of a lemon. Bring to a boil then cook at a bare simmer for about 15-18 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let the syrup cool down. Add ½ teaspoon of cornstarch (dissolved in water) and a pinch of salt; then cook about 2 minutes longer. Let cool to room temperature.

I paired the olive relish with Kerry Gold brand Blarney Castle Gouda cheese.

Kerry Gold Cheese Recipe with Picture

See the last post: Apple Crostata Recipe


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