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Seasonal kumquat festival in Takachiho!

For a limited time from January until March every year we welcome the kumquat season!

As a result of last years success, a kumquat festival is being held at Michi-no-Eki, the hospital shop, and Kihachi-no-Kura at Gamadase market – all in Takachiho!

What makes the kumquat special?

Though the fruit is native to Southeast Asia, the Kumquat or kinkan as it is know by in Japanese, is known all around the world as a superfruit.

The small citrus fruit that looks like a tiny oblong orange, actually contains twice as much Vitamin C as an actually orange!

It is also packed with fiber, a range of vitamins as well as antioxidants, and are great for strengthening the immune system and even said to help protect against heart diseases and cancer. Containing a lot of calcium makes them good for digestion and metabolism as well as for your bones and teeth.

Let us not forget to mention it is great as a beauty food, nurturing the skin and hair quality.

It is also said that the peel and seeds contains some Omega 3, meaning the whole fruit is good for you!

 

Takachiho + Kumquats = ♥

The kumquat tree is quite adaptable and can survive in different temperatures, however the fruits size and flavor will change depending on the climate.

Takachiho being a high altitude mountain town that both experience snow and frost, as well as hot warm days, makes it a unique environment which in return have bought forth a colorful and sweet kumquat packed with vitamins called the Takachiho kumquat.

The kumquats are hand picked and measured, and when the size exceeds 28 mm and with a sugar percentage of 16 percent, they are allowed to go under the elite name “Tama tama” kumquat. An even higher level is when the kumquat is measured over 32 mm and a sugar percentage of 18, then they are allowed to be called “Tama tama Excellent”.

The Tama tama kumquat is the largest kumquat in Japan and Takachiho turns out to be one of the top places for cultivation.

Taste and how to eat

The kumquat have a distinctly citrus flavor and is a mix of sweet, sour and bitter at once. While you can peel it, it is common to eat it as is with peel and seeds (although some do remove the seeds). In fact the peel is said to be the sweetest part of the fruit!

While they are delicious raw, they are great in sweets, processed products and for cooking as well.

 

The Kumquat festival

The kumquat has been sold seasonly at Michi-no-Eki Takachiho and Kihachi-no-Kura for many years, but for the second year in a row a official Kumquat festival is being held.

To include all the delicious and healthy ways to eat the kumquat the festival is separated into two parts. Part 1 focusing on introducing fresh kumquats, dried and processed products, and with part 2 introducing side dishes made with kumquat.

Part 1 started in the middle of January, transforming into with part 2 in February until the middle of March.

Candied kumquats are famous for being delicious world wide, these orangettes are topped with three different kinds of chocolates making them irresistible for both eye and mouth!

Some products are available year all year round while others such as gelée and orangetto are limited to the festival.

You can get the processed foods such as jams, gelée and candies during the entire festival, as long as they don’t sell out that is.

They also offer different recipes by the fresh kumquats, if you want to make some products or food yourself!

The side dish selections includes kumquat-fragrant mixed rice, kumquat and sweet potato glace, and a refreshing kumquat and grizzard salad.

 

    Staff recommendations!

    When we asked Satou working at Michi-no-Eki Takachiho, what her recommendations where she lit up and showed us a couple of products, all of course made from Tama Tama kumquats.

    The “Kinkan Mochi Miyazaki Tama Tama” (きんかん餅宮崎たまたま at 594 yen a box), is made from Tama tama kumquat and is super delicious.

    An other recommendations is the cookies “Kinkan Horo Horo” (きんかんホロホロ at 691 yen for 10 cookies a box, or 1188 yen for 18 a box), a Michi-no-Eki Takachiho original product only available at Michi-no-Eki Takachiho. “They look very cute and melts in your mouth. They ranked no. 1 in sales in December” says Satou.

    ★Click here for directions to Michi-no-Eki Takachiho

    ★Click here for directions to Kihachi-no-Kura

    ★Click here for directions to Takachiho Hospital shop

     

     

    Conclusion

    Here we introduced the kumquat superfruit and the kumquat festival in Takachiho. Did you know the kumquat had so many health benefits?

    The festival started in the middle of January with fresh as well as processed fruit. The second part is from February 1st until March 15th and extended to include side dishes as well.

    Please go have a look at the different products, or just visit Michi-no-Eki Takachiho och Kihachi-no-Kura and try a sample of the fresh kumquats!

     

     

     

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