Kumquat Marmalade with Vanilla Bean

This kumquat marmalade is amazing, it is sweet and tart at the same time with a hint of vanilla, great on biscuits, toast and everywhere you enjoy a touch of sweetness.

These little miniature oranges are a lot of fun and great as a marmalade, specially because they can be very sour to be eaten fresh. I grew up with it and remember everyone making face when eating the flesh… therefore great as marmalade or candied…

We have a dwarf kumquat tree in our backyard and every year the little tree will have fruits, some years more than others…this year we had a lot…I was even able to give some to my mom and kept part of it to eat fresh and make marmalade.

– What is kumquat?

Kumquats are little oranges and it shapes can be round or like olive. It is translated to “golden orange” from Chinese. Kumquat has its origin in Asia and native to Taiwan, Japan, Korea and China. In traditional Chinese medicine, kumquat is great for treating coughs and sore throats.

– How do I eat kumquat?

The pulp of this fruit is tart and the skin sweet, therefore you don’t peel, you eat the peel.  The interesting thing about eating kumquat is the big contrast between the sour flesh and the sweet peel as often only the peel is eaten.

– Is kumquat healthy?

Yes, like all the citrus, kumquat is loaded with vitamin C. The peel is rich in fiber and high in polyphenols which are antioxidants.

– Can you grow kumquat tree?

Kumquat trees are very resistant to cold weather as compared to other citrus trees, therefore it should be easy to grow almost anywhere…and yes, I have a dwarf kumquat tree in my back yard and had been giving me kumquats for years.

– Why you should make kumquat marmalade with vanilla bean?

Not only because it is pretty, the little vanilla bean specks in between the see-through orange color marmalade as well as the flavor…the combination of the sour and sweet with a hint of vanilla is very special…

– How you serve kumquat marmalade?

The same way you use orange marmalade…in ice cream, on toast/biscuit/muffins, with yogurt, in crepes, in oatmeal, with cheese…

– Ready to try kumquat marmalade?

Before I continue, I would like to disclose that I have been given “Tahitian Pure Vanilla Bean Paste” as part of a product review through Nielsen-Massey. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. Okay…back to the marmalade.

When the company contacted me to see if I would like to try the vanilla paste, I did not hesitate and took the offer in a heartbeat…imagine not need to cut the vanilla pod and scrap the seeds in your recipe…I was so excited to try it…so here I am…



After kumquats being washed and dried, cut the ends and discard them. Slice the kumquats into approximately 2.5-3 mm (⅛ in) with a sharp knife and remove the seeds in it.

In a medium pot place the sugar and water. Bring to boil and reduce the heat to medium, mix gently until all the sugar is dissolved. Add the sliced kumquats and the vanilla bean paste.

Cook in medium heat for approximately 15 minutes until the sliced kumquats are translucent. Remove from heat and let it cool before pouring the marmalade into a jar. Refrigerate the marmalade.

If you feel that the syrup is too thin, you can strain the sliced kumquat and place the syrup back in the pot and simmer until the desired texture. Pour back the kumquats and let it come to boiling point. Remove from the heat and let it cool before pouring into a jar.

– Looking for more recipes using citrus fruits? Take a look at these…

Did you know that kumquat is a symbol of good luck and prosperity? Kumquat trees reach its height during the Chinese New Year (Lunar New Year), and yes, the kumquats in our tree were at their prime during the Chinese Lunar Year.

Thank you for visiting Color Your Recipes…have a colorful week!

Beef Empanada

Slightly flaky crust filled with aromatic, moist, flavorful ground beef…perfect as finger food especially when entertaining.

– Where did I discover this recipe?

When I saw this recipe at Healthy World Cuisine I could not resist but try to make it…well Bobbi used pie crust for the empanadas and the crust look amazingly flaky and mouthwatering.

I chose to try a pre-made dough for empanadas and tapas…well, I must confess that the crust was not as flaky as I would like it to be, but for the convenience it is okay…it contained less fat therefore a bit crisp…

– Can you make it ahead?

Absolutely, you can use pre-made pie crust and make the beef filling in advance and even pre-filled the empanadas and store in the refrigerator until you are ready to place them in the oven.

I mainly followed the recipe from Healthy World Cuisine for the ground beef filling with minor modification  and it was so tasty, the slices of olives gave a nice Spanish touch to these empanadas, I highly recommend, especially as the holiday season is around the corner…great if you are entertaining or just as a nice treat for your family.

– Okay, let’s take a look at the recipe.

By the way, I literally stuffed the empanadas, therefore had only a little leftover of the beef filling.


  • 1 package of pre-made empanada crust (12)
  • 1 lb ground lean beef
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves finely minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • ½ cup sliced green olive
  • 2 tablespoons red wine
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon hot paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dry oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg, for egg wash


In a frying pan, add the olive oil under medium heat and saut the onion and garlic, until slightly golden brown and aromatic.  Add the ground beef and cook until browned. Add the bell pepper, tomato paste, wine, olive and all the spices. Cook for 2-3 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste.

Remove from the heat and let it cool.

Remove the pre-made empanada dough and place in a flat surface. Add in the middle approximately 2 tablespoons of the beef filling. Fold in half and press the edges around the half circle to seal. Make small folds throughout the edge. Repeat the same with all the remaining dough.

Brush the empanadas with the egg wash and bake in a pre-heated convection oven for 15 minutes at 3500F or until golden brown.

Serve hot.

I hope you enjoy this simple recipe for beef empanadas…

– More finger food recipes?

Take a look at some ideas below…

Thank you for visiting Color Your Recipes…have a colorful week!

Ice Cream Swiss Roll

Can you find a better combination than ice cream and cake? Well, in this Swiss roll ice cream cake you have them both, all in one bite.

This is a fun Swiss roll, especially during the hot weather. And the best part of it, is that you can prepare way in advance and store in the freezer until you are ready to serve.

The recipe is super easy…just use a simple sponge cake batter…and instead of cream, fruit for the filling, I simply filled with ice cream…the choices in regards to flavors are countless…chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, coconut, lemon…you can mix and match any kind of flavor for the sponge cake with any flavor of ice cream…it is up to you to color it the way you want…


  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 55 g cake flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 30 g vegetable oil, I used avocado oil
  • 30 g milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50 g sugar
  • Ice cream of your choice ( I used pistachio)


Have handy two 9 x 13 inch or 23 x 28cm baking trays, line one with parchment paper. To avoid the paper slipping, brush some butter on the try to “stick” the paper.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and set aside.

In a large bowl whisk egg white to foamy and add sugar, continue to whisk the egg white at medium speed to form to stiff peaks. Do not over beat, as the egg white should still remain very shiny.

In another large bowl, mix egg yolks, vanilla extract, sugar, cooking oil and fresh milk together until a light pale yellow forms and the mixture is slightly thicken.

Combine the flour mixture to the egg mix. Mix gently until all the flour is well incorporated.

Fold the egg whites into the egg yolk/flour mix in 3 portions. Fold well with a spatula after each addition of egg white. Do not over mix.

Take out about 1 ½ to 2 tablespoons of the cake batter and add 1 drop of red coloring liquid. Mix and pipe dots on the baking tray, with the help of a wooden toothpick, design your pattern by placing the tip of the stick in the middle of the dot and dragging outwards.

Place the tray in the preheated oven for about 1 minute. Transfer the parchment paper to other tray.

Pour the remaining batter onto the patterned tray. Make sure to spread the batter evenly with the spatula. Gently tap the try on the table top to remove large air bubble trapped in the batter during mixing.

Place the tray in the oven and bake for approximately 10 minutes at 350F and then turn down the temperature to 325F and bake for another 5 minutes.

Remove the desired ice cream from the freezer and let it sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes.

When done baking, remove the cake from the tray and transfer onto a wire rack to cool. After cooling, flip the cake onto a plastic sheet.

Spoon the ice cream on the sponge cake. Spread evenly throughout the cake and gently roll up to make a Swiss roll.

Wrap with the plastic sheet and place the roll in the freezer for a couple of hours.

When it is time to serve, remove the Ice cream Swiss roll from the freezer, slice accordingly to the thickness you desire and let it sit for a couple of minutes at room temperature.

If you enjoy this recipe for Swiss roll, you might want to check on the Black Forest Swiss Roll recipe.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful week!


Star and Flower Shaped Toasts

This is a simple and fun way to make toast. It is cute and it will bring smiles.

Do you like toasts? I mean the ones that are crispy and crunchy and are stored inside an airtight container. The kind which you can spread pate, brie cheese, jam and so on…they are so basic and are delicious with either sweet or savory spreads…and all kind of cheese as well. They make great appetizer as well and are usually sold as “mini toasts”.

I love to have these toasts available all the time so when I saw these molds on Amazon I could not resist in getting it…so this week I am sharing the dough that I used for these molds. Moreover, you can make all kind of bread and shape them as you like by using one of the three molds.

By the way, on my last week post I served the egg salad with ham and celery on these star shaped toasts.


Water roux or Tangzhong

  • 20 g bread flour
  • 100 ml water


  • 300 g bread flour
  • 40 g sugar
  • 8 g salt
  • 20 g dry milk powder
  • 4 g yeast
  • 4 g salt
  • 1 egg, approximately 51g or 50g heavy cream
  • 45 to 50 ml water or milk
  • 20 g butter (room temperature)



Water roux or Tangzhong

In a small pan, mix all the ingredients of water roux, place in a low heat and stir constantly until the temperature reach 65C (150F), or if you do not have a thermometer, cook until ripples form. Set aside to cool by covering with a plastic film. Please see the recipe in this post.


Place all the cooled water roux and all the ingredients listed dough except the butter into the bread machine (I use the Zojirushi from HERE) and set to knead. Mix until all the ingredients are together, it will be very sticky. Do not attempt to add more flour. Once the gluten form, it will not be so sticky.

Add the butter when the machine beeps and continue the kneading cycle. Once the cycle ends, start the machine again under kneading cycle, totaling to 2 kneading cycles. After the end of the second kneading cycle the dough will achieve the window pane stage.

You will notice that the dough will no longer stick to the wall of the mixing bowl.

Place the dough into a medium to large bowl. Cover and let it proof until the size double from the original size.

Remove the dough from the bowl and divide the dough my weighing 240g for the star shape mold and 290g for the flower shape mold.

Flatten the ball and shape like a Swiss roll and place into each mold and let it rise until almost 90% to reach the rim of the pan.

Cover the mold and bake for approximately 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven let it cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Gently tap the mold and loose the bread. Remove the bread from the mold and transfer to a wire rack until completely cool.

Slice when the bread it totally cool.

Serve as it is or toast in a preheated oven of 275F until crunchy and golden. Once cool store in airtight container.

I you enjoyed this bread recipe you might want to check on these other bread recipes HERE.


Did you know that the browning of the bread is called “Maillard reaction”? Maillard reaction or browning of food occurs when proteins and sugar are exposed to heat. Maillard reaction occurs in cooking with almost all kinds of food, from baking bread, roasting meat to frying chicken.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful week!

Lemon Cilantro

Do you find yourself with lots of cilantro? Here is what you can do with it…Lemon or lime cilantro dressing…it is so easy and so good.

This dressing in one of the easiest and tasty dressing…and it is delicious with fish, meat, chicken and even Brussels sprouts.


1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice or lime
½ cup olive oil
1 bunch cilantro (including the stem)
1 teaspoon honey
Salt and pepper to taste


Place all the ingredients in the food processor and mix for 30 to 40 seconds, until a smooth and even color.

Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator. Use in within one week.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful day!

Parmesan Tuiles

These Parmesan tuiles or crisp are very simple to make and they are sure very tasty and elegant when added to any salad, especially Caesar salad.

You can always add a variety of herbs to please your palate…and your eyes.


½ cup to 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Herb of your choice


Preheat the oven to 350oF

In a bowl mix gently the grated Parmesan cheese with the herb of your choice, I used oregano.

Spoon the Parmesan cheese mix on a silicon mat (about 2 to 3 tablespoons) making small circle of approximately 2 ½ inch in diameter.

Bake until slightly golden brown, about 10 minutes.

Cool for a minute or so and using a silicone spatula gently transfer the tuiles to a cookie sheet.

Use immediately or store in an airtight container for later use.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful day!

Strawberry Coulis

This is very easy and great to have available all the time. I like to make when the strawberries are in season and store them in the freezer and when needed just thaw and use in any way you like. I like this strawberry coulis with cheesecake, ice cream, spherical yogurt, yogurt, panna cotta, cakes or even in drinks, like lemonade, margaritas, daiquiris, and the list goes on and on.


2 lb of fresh strawberries, cleaned, hulled and cut into quarters
¼ cup sugar
¼ water
Lemon to taste

Use fresh…

or freeze.


In a medium pan place all the ingredients and cook under medium heat. Once it boils remove from the heat and let it cool.

Using an immersion blender or regular blender, puree until smooth.

Cover and refrigerate or freeze using by pouring the strawberry coulis in ice mold and freeze for later use.

If prefer you can use raspberries or even a mix of strawberries and raspberries.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful day!

Bacon Bits Made It Easy

One of the issues that I have when shopping at Costco is that everything comes in big packages…and bacon is not an exception…therefore I make this bacon bits and store in the freezer, so every time that I need some bacon to enhance any dish flavor I just need to reach the bacon bits bag in the freezer and take whatever amount I need.

Another thing that I do is to fry the bacon outdoor at the stove attached to my BBQ, so my house does not smell the grease which many times even with the hood at full blast the smoke still manages to scape. One thing that I noticed is that every time that I make this bacon bits, the neighbor’s dogs get all excited…

So here is what I do…

1. Remove the package of bacon from the freezer and let it defrost (slightly), which make it easy to cut (otherwise, the bacon gets kind of rubbery/chewy). If you have the bacon in the refrigerator, place the package in the freezer for about half hour.

2. Remove the excess of fat.

3. Cut the bacon into approximately 1/8 inch.

4. Place the bacon in a wok or fry pan, use medium heat. Stir once in a while.

5. The water content will evaporate first.

6. Slowly the fat will start to melt.

7. Lower the heat so the fat will melt without burning the bacon as the melting fat temperature is higher than the water. Continue to stir gently.

8. Once all the water evaporates, and only fat remains, you will notice lots of bubbles…this is the stage that you have to keep your eyes on it. It will burn easily. Be careful it is very hot!

9. Scoop the bacon from the pan once the bacon bits achieve the color you desire.

10. Place the bacon in paper towel to absorb the fat.

11. Place another layer of paper towel on top of the bacon bits and press gently to remove the excess of fat. Let it cool and store in an airtight bag or container in the freezer.

12. Discard the remaining oil from the pan in a can or glass jar.

Now this bacon bits are ready for your favorite recipe!

Frozen Edible Flowers

I have been growing violas since last year, they are very easy to grow and fun to use in the kitchen. They have a pleasant pea flavor and are great to use for decorating desserts or toss into a green salad.

I started with seeds…it was very easy and I was very happy when I noticed the little leaves coming from the soil…
after a while there were so many flowers…more than I asked for, and I felt bad just tossing them out. So I froze the little flowers in the ice cube tray. Once the flowers were frozen, I removed from the tray and stored in an airtight contained in the freezer for future use. This ice cubes can be used when serving juice, cocktails or simply ice water. You cannot imagine smiles when serving drinks with these little flowers in the ice cube…a simple idea that can generate big smiles.

I hope you enjoy this simple idea of frozen edible flowers.

 Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful day!

Frozen Basil Dollops

Have you ever found yourself with so much fresh basil that you do not know what to do with it? Well, this happened to me…my basil plants were so beautiful but we had to go for vacation and I knew that if I left them in the pots they would be all dead by the time we came home, so I desperately search in the internet for a solution. So here I am sharing with you what I found…an efficient and easy way to preserve fresh basil by creating a paste with a small amount of olive oil and freeze.

Place the clean and dried basil leaves in the food processor

Slowly drizzle olive oil or any oil of your preference into the processor’s bowl with the basil leaves until a thick paste.

Once the basil and oil turns into a paste, turn the processor off and spoon on a silicone mate.

Place the basil in the freezer for a few hours or overnight until completely frozen.

Once the basil paste dollops are frozen, remove from the silicone mate and place them in airtight container in the freezer.

Now this frozen basil paste are ready for any of your favorite dishes!

I hope you enjoy this simple idea for storing basil.

Thank you for stopping by Color Your Recipes…have a colorful day!