Facts/Uses for Clementines
The terms “Clementine” and Tangerine” are often used interchangeably in the US, but they’re not the same fruit. Tangerines are actually a variety of mandarin (one of the original citrus fruits, along with pomelos and citrons), while Clementines are a cross between a mandarin and a sweet orange.
How Sweet it Is!
Fresh Clementines are a wonderful snack for all ages. Small, seedless, and with bright orange skins that are easy to peel, they have an intensely sweet flavor that can’t be compared to any other citrus fruit. Slightly more oval in shape than tangerines with a slightly flat spot on their tops and bottoms, Clementine fruit are even sweeter in flavor. All these qualities make them perfect for kids to carry in a lunch box, or as a quick, satisfying snack any time. If you’re trying to eat healthier, a sweet Clementine is a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth!
You may see Clementines in your local grocery store, where they’re packaged as Cuties or Haloes, but these are marketing names – they’re still Clementine oranges. A winter citrus fruit (though they can also grow year-round in some locations), Clementines are in season in the US from November through February. Most US Clementines are grown in California, though Texas Clementines are also available.
Where to Find Clementines
Clementines are often found in your local grocery store around the holidays (they’re a great alternative to oranges in a little one’s stocking). An affordable fruit, Clementines are sold in crates, bags and boxes. When shopping for Clementines, be sure to choose fruits with a shiny, evenly colored skins that are bright orange and free of blemishes. The fruit should be soft and bounce back when gently squeezed, and the skin should be fragrant. Avoid any that are too firm, too mushy, that seem too lightweight for their size.
If you buy Clementines online from Pittman & Davis, you can always be sure of getting the best, freshest and most perfectly ripened available. Plus, a Clementine gift is always a great way to let your friends and family know you care – choose a box of Clementines on their own, or Clementines packaged together with an assortment of other fruits and goodies.
What Are Clementines Good For?
Got more tasty Clementines than you can gobble or store? Luckily Clementines (like most citrus fruits) last a long time, but they also go great in so many recipes. Use them up in a moist citrus cake, sweet pudding or refreshing sorbet (be sure to reserve the peels to make zest for marinades, rice and fish dishes). They’re also wonderful additions to ambrosia recipes or in a salad – whisk together lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper, and allow cucumber slices and peeled and segmented Clementines to marinate in it for thirty minutes before spreading over a bed of greens for a refreshing salad the whole family can enjoy.
You can also create an all-natural, homemade detergent using Clementines and vinegar – most detergents contain extracts from citrus fruits, which are natural cleaning agents and great at removing odors. Clementines are also great for your skin, so while you’re at it make some homemade skincare products!
Like most citrus, Clementines last a long time when stored in the fridge, but for the best, most intense flavor you should store them on the counter. Leave them loosely piled in a bowl out of direct sunlight for best results, and you’ll enjoy they’re sweet, juicy flavor for as long as they last (which we guarantee won’t be long, so be ready to order more)!