The Middle Eastern and North African tradition of preserving lemons in salt results in an explosively strong and distinctive condiment for seasoning food. They are integral to many, many dishes-- fragrant tagines, marinades and all sorts of salads. The rinsed rind can be chopped finely and mixed with olives for an instant treat and a little preserved lemon pulp and rind adds a huge amount of flavor to any fish dish.
I first preserved lemons a few years ago, after receiving an authentic tagine for Christmas, and now always have a jar of them handy, and I've had the idea of preserving kumquats in the back of my mind ever since.
Kumquats are usually preserved in one of two ways: as a sweet, in sugar syrup, or buried in salt until they dessicate and release all of their juices to make a brine. I wanted the lovely moist silken texture of my preserved lemon recipe, rather than a collection of dried kumquats, so I decided to modify the recipe I use for lemons. I won't know whether or not it's a success for several weeks, though. A jar of preserved lemons needs about 6 weeks to fully pickle and I am guessing the much smaller kumquats will need about half that time.
2 one-pint containers of kumquats--scrubbed
Fresh lemon juice, as needed (about 6 lemons)
Pat the kumquats dry and cut off the stem ends. Make a single vertical cut 3/4 of the way through each kumquat. Fill each cut with as much salt as it will hold and place them into a sterilized wide-mouth quart glass jar. Compress them into the jar until no space is left and add lemon juice to cover. Seal and set aside. Do not refrigerate.
The kumquats will be ready to use when the rinds are tender, in about 2 to 3 weeks (if my guess is correct! I will edit this recipe when I know what is what).
Refrigerate after opening.