Calamansi, also known as calamondin, is a citrus fruit that’s widely loved for its unique taste. Have you ever wondered what makes its flavor so distinctive?
The taste of calamansi is a delightful mix of sour and sweet, with a hint of bitterness. It’s like a burst of citrusy freshness in your mouth, with a tartness that’s balanced by a subtle sweetness.
In this article, I’ll detail the taste of calamansi, giving you a deeper understanding of this fascinating fruit.
How Does Calamansi Taste?
The taste of calamansi is a complex blend of flavors that makes it stand out among other citrus fruits.
When you first bite into a calamansi, you’re hit with a tart, sour punch. This sourness is similar to that of a lemon or lime, but it’s more intense.
As the initial sourness subsides, you start to notice a sweetness that softens the tartness. This sweetness is not overpowering; it’s just enough to balance the sourness and make the calamansi enjoyable.
The smell of calamansi is just as enticing as its taste. It has a strong, refreshing citrus aroma that’s more fragrant than a lemon or lime. When a calamansi is ripe, its skin is a vibrant orange and feels firm to the touch. Inside, the fruit is juicy and packed with flavor.
Comparing Calamansi with Other Citrus Fruits
- Lemon: Lemons are more sour and less sweet than calamansi. They also have a stronger, more intense aroma.
- Lime: Limes are similar to calamansi in terms of sourness, but they lack calamansi’s sweetness. Their aroma is less fragrant as well.
- Orange: Oranges are much sweeter and less sour than calamansi. They also have a different aroma, which is sweet and less citrusy.
- Grapefruit: Grapefruits are less sour and more bitter than calamansi. They also have a unique aroma that’s different from other citrus fruits.
- Mandarin: Mandarins are sweeter and less sour than calamansi. Their aroma is sweet and not as strong as calamansi.
Does Calamansi Taste Good?
The taste of calamansi initially might catch you off guard, but as your palate adjusts, you’ll start to appreciate the subtle sweetness that follows. It’s this balance of flavors that make calamansi so intriguing.
However, not everyone is a fan of this sour-sweet combo. Some people find the sourness too overpowering, while others aren’t fond of the slight bitterness that lingers after each bite.
If you’re new to calamansi, it might take a few tries to enjoy its unique taste.
Fresh calamansi is great for recipes that require juice or zest, while frozen calamansi can be a handy substitute when fresh ones aren’t available.
What Does Calamansi Look Like?
If you’re on the hunt for calamansi at the grocery store, here’s what to look out for. Calamansi is a small citrus fruit about the size of a key lime. It has a round shape and smooth, glossy skin that’s a vibrant orange color when ripe.
When you pick up a calamansi, it should feel firm but not hard. If it’s too soft, it might be overripe. Also, check the skin for any signs of damage or mold, as these could affect the quality of the fruit.
Inside, calamansi is similar to other citrus fruits. It has a juicy flesh that’s divided into segments, and it’s packed with small seeds. The flesh is a pale yellow color, which contrasts nicely with the bright orange skin.
So, next time you’re at the grocery store, watch for these characteristics to ensure you’re getting the best calamansi.
Does Calamansi Have Seeds?
Yes, calamansi do have seeds. Inside each fruit, you’ll find a number of small, white seeds nestled within the juicy flesh. These seeds are similar in size and shape to those found in other citrus fruits like lemons or limes.
As for the flavor, calamansi seeds don’t really have much of a taste. They’re not typically eaten, but if you do happen to bite into one, you’ll find that it’s slightly bitter.
While calamansi seeds are technically edible, most people remove them before eating the fruit or using them in recipes. This is mainly for convenience and to avoid the slight bitterness of the seeds.
So, while you can eat them if you want to, there’s no real benefit to doing so.
How To Make Calamansi Taste Good
If you’re looking to enjoy calamansi on its own, you can use a few tricks to make it taste better. Here are some suggestions:
- Add a pinch of salt: Salt can help balance the sourness of calamansi and bring out its natural sweetness.
- Mix with honey: Honey and calamansi go well together. The sweetness of the honey can help temper the tartness of the calamansi.
- Chill before eating: Calamansi can taste even more refreshing when it’s cold. Try chilling the fruit in the refrigerator before eating.
- Pair with dark chocolate: The bitterness of dark chocolate can complement the sour-sweet flavor of calamansi. Try having a piece of dark chocolate after eating calamansi.
- Try a calamansi sorbet: If you’re up for a little kitchen experiment, try making a calamansi sorbet. The sweetness of the sorbet can help balance the tartness of the calamansi.
Remember, the key to enjoying calamansi is to balance its sourness with something sweet or salty. Experiment with different combinations to find what works best for you.
Calamansi Recipes And Side Dishes
Calamansi in Recipes
- Calamansi Juice: This is a refreshing drink made by squeezing the juice from calamansi and mixing it with water and sugar. It’s a popular beverage in the Philippines, especially during the hot summer months.
- Calamansi Marmalade: This is a sweet and tangy spread made from calamansi, sugar, and water. It’s great on toast or as a filling for pastries.
- Calamansi Chicken: This is a savory dish where chicken is marinated in a mixture of calamansi juice, soy sauce, and spices, then grilled to perfection.
Calamansi can also be used to enhance the flavor of side dishes. Here are a few suggestions:
- Calamansi Rice: Cook your rice as usual, then stir in some calamansi juice and zest at the end for a citrusy twist.
- Calamansi Coleslaw: Add some calamansi juice to your coleslaw dressing for a refreshing, tangy flavor.
- Calamansi Butter: Mix some calamansi juice and zest into softened butter for a citrus-infused spread that’s great on bread or as a topping for grilled vegetables.
Calamansi has a strong flavor, so a little goes a long way. Start with a small amount and add more as needed.
Can you eat calamansi raw?
You can eat calamansi raw but be prepared for its sour taste. It’s often used as a flavoring in food and drinks instead.
How do you store calamansi?
Calamansi can be stored at room temperature for a few days, but it’s best to keep them in the refrigerator for longer storage.