In season late autumn: Mandarins
Sweet and easy-to-peel mandarins are the perfect fresh fruit. With distinctive bright orange skin, they are sometimes called mandarin oranges. The main varieties grown in New Zealand are Satsuma, Encore, Richard Special and Afourer mandarins. Satsumas are the main export variety and are seedless.
Choose firm fruit that are heavy for their size. Avoid fruit with blemishes and soft spots.
Store at room temperature for up to four days or they can be refrigerated in your crisper for up to two weeks.
Mandarins are an excellent source of vitamin C.
Mandarins are a highly portable snack for lunchboxes, picnics and hikes. Use them in baking, salads and recipes where their sweetness and bright colour add freshness.
- Use mandarin segments to add citrusy flavour to fresh fruit salads.
- Fill crêpes with peeled mandarins and make a quick sauce by heating juice, sugar and grated zest.
- Juice mandarins to make a jelly and add peeled segments as it begins to set.
- Toss together a salad of baby spinach, mandarin segments, red onion, feta cheese and toasted walnuts.
- Use mandarin zest, juice and flesh in place of oranges in baking for a flourless almond cake, mandarin syrup cake or mandarin muffins.
- Make a fresh fruit drink juicing mandarins, apple, pear, carrot and celery.
- Make roasted duck salad with fresh mandarins, snow peas, mizuna leaves, crispy noodles and an Asian-style dressing of light soy, mandarin juice, sesame oil and mirin.
- For an easy dessert mix mandarins, blueberries, crushed meringues, mini marshmallows, thick low-fat yoghurt and reduced-fat sour cream together.