Kishu mandarins: How to choose, store and prepare
One of the most exciting developments at farmers markets in the last several years has been the proliferation of new types of mandarins, formerly known as tangerines. While once you could only find two or three types all year -- and rarely varietally labeled -- now there are many. One of the most sought-after is the Kishu, a tiny little fruit never much bigger than a ping-pong ball. The flavor is intensely candied and the fruit is reliably seedless.
How to choose: Look for mandarins that are deeply colored and firm. If they are sold with the leaves attached, make sure the leaves are fresh and flexible.
How to store: Because their skins are so thin, mandarins are one citrus fruit that needs to be refrigerated, tightly sealed in a plastic bag.
How to prepare: A memorable winter dessert at Chez Panisse Cafe -- just a Moroccan blue bowl of orange fruit mixed with caramel-colored fresh dates.
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