Satsuma Mandarins

Seedless, juicy, and easy to peel, today's Satsuma Mandarins originated in Japan from those imported from China in the 16th century. Mandarin' refers to the bright orange robes worn by the mandarins, public officials of the ancient Chinese court. Technically a berry, they have an intoxicating citrus aroma; the skin is packed with oil and can be more fragrant than the flesh. The peels are great to candy and zest is often added to sauces for extra flavor. These are picked with stems and leaves attached, making them perfect for a lovely holiday presentation. Bumpy or pebbly in texture, the sometimes-green rind usually reflects a warm growing season (keeping the chlorophyll pigment in the rind active). They are especially good in desserts. Use as a decoration, a topping on ice cream with a drizzle of Grand Marnier, or as a dipper for chocolate fondue for quick desserts.

Storage & Handling: They may be stored in a cool, dark spot for a few days, but ideally should be refrigerated to extend shelf life up to two weeks. 1 1/4 cup of Mandarin orange sections is equivalent of an 11 ounce can for recipes. Organic produce should not be stored with non-organic produce.