A heap of calamansi lime fruit
Calamansi Limes: The Fruit You Should Start Pairing With Every Filipino Meal
By Grace Allison
A calamansi lime features in almost every Filipino dish, with its quintessential flavor embodying one of the most dominant tastes in Filipino cooking: sour.
A hybrid of a kumquat and mandarin, the calamansi lime has a wonderfully fruity sourness — imagine the tart taste of an orange, lemon, and lime combined.
You can use it as a seasoning, similar to salt and pepper. Cut off the end and squeeze it over Filipino noodles (pancit), curries (kare-kare), or seafood.
You can even make a simple Filipino lemonade with calamansi juice, water, and syrup, or get a cup of calamansi iced milk tea at The Teapsy in New York City to try its flavor.
The fruit is also used to prepare toyomansi, a Filipino dipping sauce and marinade, which is widely used in several Filipino dishes, including the popular adobo.
Made with pork, chicken, or beef, adobo is hearty, tangy, and deeply savory, and the calamansi brings a citrusy kick to the meat that echoes the lively flavors of the Philippines.
Another popular Filipino dish that uses calamansi limes is kinilaw, a zingy, marinated fish or seafood. Besides flavors, the fruit also offers nutrients like vitamin C and calcium.