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What are Satsumas? Sweet Mandarins You Have to Try

Satsuma Mandarins

Have you heard of Satsumas? Don't miss out on this sweet and juicy variety of mandarin oranges. Read on to learn why you can't go wrong with Satsumas!

Mandarin oranges are some of the most versatile, delicious citrus fruits available. Among mandarins, Satsumas are the cream of the crop. Their great taste and convenience in growing and consuming make them the perfect choice whether you are picking up one to enjoy for lunch or investing in a grove to harvest.

Here are eight reasons why Satsumas are worth growing and enjoying!

1. They Have a Long History

The Satsuma’s name comes from the name of the Japanese province where it came from more than 700 years ago. Jesuits brought the fruit to the United States by way of Louisiana. 

Some think the fruit originated in China (hence its connection with the mandarin kind of fruit). 

Legend has it that the name “Satsuma” is credited to the wife of a United States minister to Japan, General Van Valkenberg, who sent her the trees in 1878 from Satsuma. Between 1908-1911, nearly a million budded trees were transported to the Gulf States.

2. They Can Withstand Frost

Satsumas are considered cold hardy and can withstand major drops in temperature. 

However, they are sensitive and may not withstand travel as well as their peers, clementines and mandarins. Their distinctive skin, which makes them so easy to peel, is not as effective in preventing bruising and damage. 

3. They are Great in All Kinds of Recipes

Satsumas go well in many kinds of foods and beverages, from gin and tonics to citrus-flavored cake. The juiciest and sweetest member of the mandarin family, they also boast a deep reddish-gold color which can look very attractive in salads, desserts, or as a garnish.

Because of their intense flavor, Satsumas go well in a sauce over proteins like chicken or fish. Add them to hot oil with some fresh herbs for a fragrant glaze.

Plus, they make a fun addition to a wide variety of cocktails or sangria.

4. They Peel Very Easily

The skin of the Satsuma makes them easy to open and eat right away. You won't be stuck peeling off the white strings like you may with some other kinds of oranges. 

In a race to get the skin off a clementine, a tangerine, or a Satsuma, the latter will always win.

5. Satsumas are Nutritious

Like all citrus fruits, Satsumas are extremely nutritious. They contain high levels of Vitamin C, which is critical to overall health. Vitamin C helps your skin and hair, plus it boosts your immune system and prevents you from getting sick. 

The citrate in citrus fruits like Satsumas can also help break up the formation of crystallized minerals which cause kidney stones. They are low in calories and will fill you up easily, helping with weight loss. They have also been found to help prevent cognitive decline with conditions like Alzheimer's.

7. They're Low in Sugar

A typical Satsuma has about 65 calories. Although it is sweet, it is relatively low in sugar. That makes it an excellent snack, satisfying the need for sweetness without the empty calories of sugary treats.

In fact, adding the juice of a Satsuma to a drink of sparkling water or a cup of yogurt is an effective way to quench your sweet tooth without the ill health effects of sugar.

8. Kids Love Them

What's not to love about a Satsuma? They are little and easy to open, with very few seeds. You can stuff a couple in a lunch box, or keep some in your purse for whenever your little ones need a snack. 

Satsumas are the perfect way to get your kids - or anyone! - to eat something nutritious. Plus, they are super easy to clean up.

Satsumas: Nature's Little Gift 

Whether you want to grab some at the grocery store or grow a Satsuma mandarin orange tree yourself, you can't go wrong with Satsumas.

With a myriad of wellness benefits plus lots of other appealing characteristics, these little fruits will keep everyone you know healthy and happy.

For more on Satsumas and every other kind of citrus fruit under the sun, including health benefits, how to grow citrus and recipes, check out our blog!

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