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The murcott tangerine can be distinguished from other varieties by its pebbled peel that clings to its segmented flesh. It is not easy to peel and can bear small seeds in numerous amounts. Its golden orange skin is thin and fragrant and its flesh is bright orange, juicy and sweet. Because its flesh is laden with seeds, it is preferred as a juicing tangerine.
Murcott Tangerines are available from late Auguat through November.
Murcott Tangerines are a late maturing tangerine that are sometimes mislabeled as "honey" tangerines and "Smith" tangerines; they should not be confused with the "honey" variety and Smith is a secondary name referencing its breeder. The murcott tangerine is the hybrid result from a citrus breeding program within The United States Department of Agriculture. The documentation of its exact parentage is limited.
Murcott tangerines are used primarily for their juice because of their high seed content. Freeze juice into sorbets and granitas, blend with other citrus juices, or use in jams, curds and tarts. Add segments to salads and pair with duck, fennel, avocado, onion and olives. Use fresh chiles and herbs, goat cheeses, honey, ginger, young olive oils and dried spices such as cinnamon, oregano and saffron. Murcott tangerines will keep at room temperature but should be refrigerated for longer storage.
The murcott tangerine's origins began in the early 1900's at a breeding nursery in Florida. Murcott tangerine trees were created from budwood by Charles Murcott Smith. Commercial production of the murcott tangerine would occur on a large scale in the 1940's and continues to grow as an important tangerine variety in citrus growing regions of Florida and California. Murcott tangerine trees are cold hardy though not frost resistant. When trees bear heavy crops in one season, they often do not bear fruit the following year.
Recipes that include Murcott Tangerines. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Cook Almost Anything||Duck, Murcott, and Arugula Salad|
|SpicySaltySweet||Murcott Olive Oil Ice Cream|
|Cook Almost Anything||Honey Murcott Mandarin Sorbet|
|Martha Stewart||Tangerine Marmalade|
|Carrie's Experimental Kitchen||Honey Tangerine Chicken|