Sunday, November 13, 2005
Florida Food: Satsuma vs. Orange
Florida citrus is better than citrus from anywhere else. Oh sure, western oranges from CA or AZ are pretty with their bright orange, unblemished skin, but we don't eat orange peels now do we?
Those pretty western oranges have mighty thick skins. I always assume that is an advantage in an arid climate. Our FL oranges are not as pretty. They are ripe long before the skin changes color and they usually have blemishes on their greenish peels. Again, the peel is not the main attraction here.
These two fruits came from my Dad's backyard citrus orchard in St. Augustine. The fruit on the left is a Satsuma. This is tree candy. Sweet, sweet, sweet, and the peel practically jumps off.
The fruit on the right is a Parson Brown orange. The skin hugs the fruit pretty tightly, and the flavor is not as sweet, but they make wonderful juice.
Dad's trees are so laden with fruit that he has set up bracing boards to prop up the branches. He has grown citrus for about 50 years and he does it at the northern extreme for most varieties. During hard freezes, he keeps kerosene "flambos" burning under his trees and hopes for the best. Usually the trees survive.
If you live up north, you know there are a zillion varieties of apples. The same is true for citrus, but here in North Florida we really can only rely on a few cold hardy varieties for our backyard orchards.
After the picture, I ate both of these.
Posted by R.Powers at 9:36 AM