| Packaged whole fruits and a soft drink made from Calamondin|
Packaged whole fruits and a
soft drink made from Calamondin
| x Citrofortunella microcarpa|
Calamondin or Calamansi (x Citrofortunella microcarpa) is a fruit tree in the family Rutaceae and a member of citrofortunella that was developed in and is very popular throughout Southeast Asia, especially the Philippines, where it is most commonly used for cooking. In the west it is variously known as acid orange, calamondin orange, or Panama orange, and in the Pacific Islands it is called calamansi. It is a shrub or small tree growing to 3-6 m, and bears small citrus fruit used to flavour foods and drinks. Although sometimes described as a native of the Philippines or other areas of Southeast Asia, the tree is in fact the result of a hybrid between species in the genera Citrofortunella and unknown in the wild. Hybrids between Citrus spp. have been cultivated for so long that the origins of most are obscure. It is generally held that most species in cultivation are ancient apomictic hybrids and selected cultivars of these hybrids, including crosses with other genera such as Fortunella and Poncirus. The calamonsi is usually described as a cross between Citrus reticulata (tangerine or Mandarin orange) and Fortunella margarita (kumquat).
The fruit of the calamondin resembles a small, round lime, a little bigger than the size of a thumbnail, 25-35 mm in diameter. It has the inviting odor of a tangerine with a very thin orange skin. In spite of its appearance and aroma, the taste is quite sour. However, the fruit can be frozen whole and used as ice cubes in beverages like tea or ginger ale. The juice extracted by crushing the whole fruit makes a flavorful drink similar to lemonade, and a liqueur can also be made from the whole fruits, in combination with vodka and sugar. In Asia the juice is used to baste fish, fowl, and pork. It is commonly used as a condiment for dishes such as pancit bihon. Calamondin marmalade is made in the same way as orange marmalade—with a bit more sugar, providing a delicious spread for toast at breakfast. Like other citrus fruits, the calamansi is high in vitamin C, and the juice can be a good vitamin source.
In North America the calamondin is grown mainly as an ornamental plant; it can be especially attractive when the fruit are present. It is frost sensitive and therefore limited to warm climates (e.g., Florida, south Texas, and Hawaii in the U.S.). If the plant is potted, it may be brought indoors during the winter in areas with cooler climates.
- Shikwasa (C. x depressa), also called "Calamansi"
- Mabberley, D.J. 1987. The Plant Book. A portable dictionary of the higher plants. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 706 pp. ISBN 0-521-34060-8.
- Calamondin, the miniature orange
- Source with a picture of Kalamansi
- Philippines Department of Agriculture - Calamansi Farming tips
- Source describing Kalamansi as an orange
- Recipe and photo of calamondin pie