Of my top 5 favorite fruits, I’ve got to say that one is the orange. The simple orange.
But it has become more complicated than ever to pick one.
Have you noticed how many oranges there are these days? Growing up, there was basically one type or orange: the navel. The best way to eat it was to cut it into quarters so you could just suck out the flesh and leave the skin behind.
The fun part was then to shove the section of rind into your mouth just like Brando did in The Godfather when he scared the hell out of his grandson in the garden. Remember that? Then he keeled over and died. The Godfather, not the kid.
Anyway, now you go to a grocery store today, and in addition to the basic navel, you have heirloom navels, sold on their stems, like that’s some kind of prize. You have Valencia oranges, pretty basic. You’ve got Cara Cara, which are good, good. And speaking of the Godfather, don’t forget your Italian blood oranges.
Then you’ve got tangerines. Honey tangerines. Sunburst tangerines. Pixie tangerines. Gold Nugget tangerines. How important are brand names when it comes to tangerines? Has anyone ever asked you to pick up a six-pack of Pixies and a half-dozen Gold Nuggets? Then again, has anyone ever asked you to pick up tangerines?
Now we also have tangelos. Or mineolas. Or moneola tangelos. They are a hybrid of orange and grapefruit, or pomelo. Whatever they’re called, they are a prime example of the good that can come from a mixed marriage.
How about Clementines? Such adorable little fruits that they also go by the name “cuties.” We didn’t have Clementines as kids, but fortunately Al Gore came along and invented them.
And don’t forget mandarins. The Rising C mandarin. The Afourer mandarin. And the Sumo mandarins, which are $3.99 a pound. I bought one; it cost me over two bucks. That must be why they call it sumo…because you have to wrestle with the price.
The Sumo was really good. Sweet and juicy. But frankly, given the choice between that and the eight Sunkist navels that my supermarket sells for the same two bucks…I go for the 8 navels.
Right back to where I started as a kid.Pin It