A baseball-sized citrus fruit that generally has an orange skin and flesh that is a segmented ball of pulp and juice wrapped in a thin semi-transparent membrane. Its flesh is juicy and may have a sweet to slightly bitter taste, depending on the variety. The flesh is enclosed in a skin that is made up of two layers. The aromatic outer layer is the zest, which has a shiny appearance and is generally orange in color but can also be green, yellow or orange with patches of red. The layer under the zest is the pith, which is a light creamy color and has a soft texture with a bitter taste. They are grown in regions with a subtropical or Mediterranean climate. There are three main types of oranges: the sweet oranges; the loose-skinned mandarins; and the bitter oranges. Oranges are a good source of vitamins, such as vitamin C and four B vitamins, high in dietary fiber, and are also a good source of many important minerals.
Tangerines and mandarins are sometimes mistakenly referred to as the same fruit but tangerines are actually a subgroup of the mandarins. The tangerine is a cross between mandarins and the bitter orange. There are many different varieties of tangerines. Their skins are generally deep reddish-orange, slightly textured, loose fitting, and easy to peel. They contain 8 to 15 segments, which are easily separated. Most tangerines are smaller in size than an orange and have a slightly flattened shape. Their size, shape, color, and flavor varies with the different varieties.
How to use: Similar to oranges
At their best: Similar to oranges
How to buy: Similar to oranges
Storage: Similar to oranges
A Clementine is the fruit of a variety of mandarin (Citrus reticulata), named in 1902. This fruit is a variably formed citrus ranging from slightly oblate through globose to oblong and sometimes broadly pyriform from development of neck or collar, as well as variably sized, ranging from medium-small to medium. The rind is of medium thickness; moderately firm, but easily peelable and does not puff until well after maturity. Smooth and glossy surface of colour deep orange to reddish-orange. The flesh is a deep orange colour, and is described as tender and melting with a sweet flavour. Typically there are 8 to 12 juicy segments.
The Clementine is not always distinguished from other varieties of mandarin: in German and Russian, it is generally referred to as "Mandarine". However, it should not be confused with similar fruit such as the satsuma, which is another name for the Japanese mikan, and is another popular variety. The clementine is occasionally referred to as Algerian tangerine
The Dancy Tangerine is one of the original tangerines that was introduced to the Orient hundreds of years ago. In 1867, G.L. Dancy brought it to Florida from Morocco. This sweet Tangerine may be full of history, but most importantly, it's full of fl avour.
Fairchild Tangerine is the variety first to ripen during the season in North America. It is a popular variety in the United States. The Fairchild has a slightly flattened shape with a lightly pebbled, deep orange rind. It has a thin skin but is still fairly easy to peel. The flesh contains seeds but is juicy with a rich sweet flavor. Fairchild tangerines are sometimes found with the stem and leaves still attached. The Chinese believe the stems and leaves attached to the tangerine are a symbol of prosperity and good luck. It is available from October to Middle of January.
Fallglo Tangerine is one of the larger varieties of tangerines. Its thin rind is deep orange in color and easy to peel. The juicy flesh is also deep orange in color and has a sweet flavor. It is available from the middle of October through November.
The Honey mandarin, available from the west in late January through April, is very aromatic with a distinctive rich flavor. The fruit is thin skinned with a glossy texture, and is slightly flat in shape with no neck. It is very juicy, peels and segments easily, and has many seeds.
Honey Tangerine is a variety of tangerine that is high in sugar content, giving it a rich sweet flavor. They are small to medium in size and their rind, which is fairly smooth textured, is yellowish-orange in color with a tinge of green at times. Its flesh is a dark orange color and contains some seeds. It is available January through April. Honey tangerines are also referred to as Murcott oranges.
Royal mandarins, sometimes referred to as Temple Oranges, are available mid-January through February. They resemble an orange, with a rounder shape, and are one of the larger sized speciality fruits. The fruit has a red-orange color, a slightly rough skin and few seeds. It is easy-to-peel with a spicy tart sweet flavor.
The Satsuma is the first mandarin variety of the season available from western groves. It is a favorite during the holiday season and is known for its easy peeling and segmentation. The fruit has a pebbly textured skin, a light orange color with some green, a mild sweet flavor and virtually no seeds. Satsumas are in markets mid-October through December.
Sunburst Tangerine is a variety of tangerine that has a very smooth, thin rind. The rind is so thin that you can see ridges from the segmented section of the flesh. Its rind is a dark reddish-orange color and is easy to peel. The flesh is deep orange colored and has a rich, sweet flavor. The Sunburst has little or no seeds. It is available from November through the middle of January.