The Mandarinquat is a hybrid result of a mandarin and a kumquat, hence Mandarinquat. It can often be mislabeled as an orange variety, though it has no orange parentage. It is also known as the Indio Mandarinquat as Indio, CA is home to one of the original planting groves of the Mandarinquat tree.
The Mandarinquat is slightly bulbous in shape with a petite neck at its stem end. The peel is thin and roughly pebbled with a brilliant orange color. The zest and skin is fragrant and entirely edible with a semi-sweet finish. Its pale gold flesh has a tender juicy pulp with a few seeds and its flavor is quite tart. Eating the entire Mandarinquat can balance the sweet and tart flavors, however it is best when prepared in sauces, purees and preserves.
Mandarinquats can be eaten out-of-hand, though they are better suited for cooking into sauces, purees and preserves. Use the juice and zest in marinades, syrups, cocktails and vinaigrette. They pair with fennel, olive oil, bitter chicory, aged cheeses, fruit paste, other citrus, fresh herbs and Middles Eastern spices. Mandarinquats will keep up to two weeks, refrigerated.