The Clementine, Unpeeled

clementine-1

It might’ve been the juiciest demonstration of structural engineering I’ve ever seen at a grocery store…a vibrant, floor-to-ceiling tower of citrus fruits. (Come on! Round, semi-squishy building blocks? Major props.) Inspired, and suddenly salivating, I added a crate of clementines to my cart.

This little factoid post is dedicated to the smarty-pants stock boy who defied all grocerdom laws of bin-bound produce, and seduced me with his citrus tower.

Did you know…

  • Clementines are a cross between a sweet orange and a mandarin. Due to a lower acidity than other citrus fruits, these little darlings (pun intended) are known for their lovely sweetness.
  • Some clementines have seeds and others do not…why? Seeds are an indication of cross-pollination. Some producers grow the Montreal variety which is self-compatible and contains seeds. But, many producers aim for the highly marketable seedless fruits.
  • Clementines (like most fruit) are designed to appeal to our senses – the vibrant color we see, the fragrant essential oils released when we peel the skin, the sweet taste…
  • Many believe clementines were discovered by Father Clement Rodier, an Algerian monk. As the story goes, Father Clement was tending to his garden and discovered a mutation of the mandarin. He cared for the unfamiliar plant and named the fruit “clementino.” (Others claim China to be the birthplace of the clementine, and believe the fruit migrated to the Mediterranean by humans.)
  • Appropriately nick-named “Christmas Oranges,” clementines are in season Nov-Jan.
  • Clementines contain vitamin C, folate, potassium, and fiber.

Image Food Science Secrets throws for what is a clementine

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