Photos by Emily Caruso
Pineapple and tofu are two of my favorite ingredients for a stir-fry, but this particular recipe has a sleeper ingredient you might not think of using: kumquats!
The kumquats are optional in this recipe since their season is so short, but if you can find them, I implore you to use them. After many years of admiring kumquats at the grocery store, I finally decided to buy some. But then I didn’t know what to do with them! I thought they’d be nice candied or turned into some kind of jam, but I’m not in a season of life where candying and jamming are possibilities. Feeling desperate, I sliced them up and added them to a stir-fry. Because I had to use them somehow!
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Well, guess what? Stir-frying kumquats works. The citrus flavor adds a little bit of complexity to the sauce, and the kumquats themselves get perfectly caramelized from the high heat of the stir-fry, which tames some of the tartness. The peel is edible and it softens further after being cooked. After making this discovery, I started adding kumquats and mandarinquats to our weekly stir-fry dinners; this particular recipe, loosely adapted from a Stir-Fried Pork and Pineapple recipe from The New York Times, is my favorite.
Prep time includes inactive time pressing tofu.
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