Sweet, juicy, easy-to-eat clementines are in season and in stores for just a few short months. Come and get ’em.
Clementines are like Oranges 2.0. They’re the cute iPod version of the original, smaller and easier to grab and go. And they’re totally user friendly, with a thin skin that practically zips right off and virtually no seeds. [In fact, according to wiseGEEK, "a clementine with seeds is evidence that bees have been at work cross-pollinating the trees with other fruit."]
Clementines may look like their seed-filled cousin the tangerine, but they’re actually the smallest variety of mandarin oranges. Grown primarily in Spain, North Africa and California, clementines are rich in vitamin C, no surprise, but they also pack a lot of calcium and folic acid. And they’re rich in dietary fiber and antioxidants. Best of all, they’re just plain delicious. Their honey-sweet flesh and small segments make them perfect for snacking on out of hand or adding to salads.
Generally available from late fall to about February, clementines are at their peak right around the holidays. For that reason, they’re sometimes called Christmas oranges. Typically, they’re sold in boxes like the one shown above. Buy a whole box of these little beauties now, while they’re at their best—chances are you’ll be back for another. And by the way, is Darling Clementines one of the coolest brand names in recorded history or what?