Winter Citrus: Sweetness & Light to Brighten your Days

The bright, vivid colors, refreshing fragrance and sweet taste of fresh citrus fruits have a way of enlivening the spirit during the lackluster days of winter. With the wide variety of citrus fruits now in season, now is the time to try something new!

Tiny, grape-sized citrus that are entirely edible. The soft rind is sweet and fragrant and the inner flesh is tart and tangy. Kumquats can be eaten whole, sliced into salads or sweetened and pureed into sauces, dressings, drinks and used to add a bright-tart citrus flavor to desserts, from cakes to sorbets.

Shasta Mandarins
Large tangerines with an easy-to-peel dark-orange rind. The flesh is virtually seedless, bright orange and very juicy with a rich and distinctively sweet flavor. Shasta Mandarins are best enjoyed out of hand for a sweet snack, but can also be juiced for a variety of drinks and cocktails, or used to season poultry dishes or desserts.

A sweet grapefruit-pummelo hybrid that tastes like a grapefruit with sugar already sprinkled on top! Very juicy, with a smooth, easy-peel rind and few seeds. Early season fruit may have a green rind, but will still be sweet and delicious. Eat out of hand as a snack or add to fruit salads. Enjoy with a spoon like a grapefruit half, or separate into segments.

Moro Blood Oranges
Moro Blood Oranges have very unique, deep crimson-red flesh. They may look like a regular orange on the outside, sometimes with a bit of red blush. The juicy, low-acid flesh has a rich, sweet citrus flavor with raspberry overtones. Peel and enjoy alone, add to fruit salads or squeeze the orange-red juice into cocktails. Great in Mimosas!

The largest and most ancient citrus fruit, the Pummelo, also known as Pomelo or Chinese Grapefruit, has a thick pithy green-gold rind and a white to pink flesh with large white membranes between the segments. The juicy flesh tastes like a sweet, low-acid grapefruit. Pummelos make a delightful breakfast fruit.

Meyer Lemons
Not a true lemon, Meyer Lemons are a lemon-orange hybrid with a rich, yellow-orange rind. The sweet flesh is slightly darker yellow and less acidic than a regular lemon, with a complex flavor and aroma of sweet lime, lemon and mandarin. Use as you would a regular lemon in a variety of savory and sweet preparations. An excellent choice for desserts, thanks to its low acidity.

Citrus Selection & Storage Tips:
Select citrus fruits that feel heavy for their size (Kumquats would be the exception). Choose fruit that is aromatic with firm, unblemished rinds. Store at room temperature for up to two days, or refrigerate in a loose plastic bag for up to two weeks.


Citrus Salad with Lemon Creme Dressing
2 Frieda’s Blood Oranges, or regular oranges, peeled
1 Frieda’s Oro Blanco Grapefruit, or other grapefruit, peeled
Lettuce leaves
Lemon Crème Dressing
Cut the oranges into halves and cut into thin slices. Cut the grapefruit into quarters and cut into thin slices. Line 4 salad plates with lettuce leaves. Arrange the citrus over the lettuce leaves. Drizzle the dressing over the salads. Makes 4 servings.

Lemon Crème Dressing:
1/4 cup light mayonnaise or mayonnaise-style salad dressing

1/4 cup reduced-fat plain yogurt
2 tbsp. minced Frieda’s Fresh Lemon Grass (bulb only)
1 tbsp. minced Frieda’s Fresh Chives
3 tbsp. milk 1 tsp. sugar

Combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon grass, chives, milk and sugar in a blender or food processor container. Process, covered, for 2 or 3 minutes or until well blended. Makes about 2/3 cup.

Ambrosia Crepes
2 Frieda’s Moro (Blood) Oranges
2 Frieda’s Oroblancos (grapefruit), peeled and sectioned
1 Frieda’s Pummelo (grapefruit), peeled and sectioned
2 8-oz. containers light cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
8 Frieda’s Crepes, at room temperature
1/2 cup flaked coconut

Halve oranges. Grate peel from one of the orange halves; reserve grated peel. Squeeze out juice from one orange half into a food processor or blender container. Peel and chop remaining orange halves; place in a medium bowl with chopped oro blanco and pummelo grapefruit sections. Toss together gently.

To same food processor or blender container, add the reserved grated peel, cream cheese and brown sugar; cover and process until well blended. Fill each crepe with some of the fruit mixture; top with a tablespoon of the cheese mixture. Sprinkle on coconut; roll up crepe. Place in a microwave-safe or ovenproof dish; spoon on remaining cream cheese mixture and coconut. Microwave on high (100%) power for 30 seconds, or heat through in 350F oven for 10 minutes. Makes 8 servings.