About burgesonfamilyfarm

Our small farm is located in Newcastle, which is in the Sierra Foothills region of Placer County, California. The Newcastle area has a unique micro-climate that is famous for producing especially sweet, flavorful Satsuma mandarin oranges. We sell Satsuma Mandarins, Meyer Lemons, Limes, Blood Oranges and Oro Blanco Grapefruit directly from our farm, and we ship boxes of our citrus throughout the U.S.

Satsuma salad with bacon

 

mandarin bacon salad recipe photo2My son sent me a text message the other day that said “bacon and Satsumas make a delicious breakfast”.  That got me thinking that the combo of Satsumas and bacon, that  sweet and salty duo of favorite flavors, could be a good start for a few tasty recipes. This is my first rift on that theme and tasty it is indeed.

Satsuma salad with bacon.

This recipe serves 4 as a side salad. As a main dish, it could serve 2 and would be yummy with added smoked turkey or smoked chicken for some extra protein.

Ingredients:

1 cup fresh squeezed satsuma mandarin juice (our Satsuma are so juicy you can even do this by just squeezing them in your hand, or use a citrus reamer or other juicing device).

¼ cups thinly sliced peeled shallot

2 Tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 tsp. white wine vinegar.

¼ tsp. or less salt

6 slices bacon, chopped in large pieces, cooked until crispy and drained (save the bacon grease).

8 cups greens (I used escarole) torn into pieces. Spinach, sturdy lettuce or thinly sliced kale are other options for this salad. Arugula might also be a nice addition.

2 cups mandarins (peeled, cut in half and then segmented so they are individual segments cut in half)

2 ounces Feta cheese (I like to use the Danish Piknik sheep’s milk cheese which comes in a can with brine. It will store for a long time in the refrigerator in the brine. I find mine at middle eastern or European grocery stores).

To make the dressing, boil the Satsuma juice on the stove until it is reduced to a thick syrup (down to about 1/3 cup total volume). Add the sliced shallot the last minute or two of boiling, then let it cool down. Now add the olive oil,  Dijon mustard, white wine vinegar, 1 Tablespoon of the reserved bacon grease and ¼ teaspoon or less salt (to taste) and mix well.

Put the greens in a bowl and add the mandarin pieces. Mix with the dressing. Serve into 4 bowls then top with the bacon pieces and crumbled white cheese.

mandarin bacon salad photo

Satsuma salad with bacon

To read more about our Satsuma mandarin farm, or to order our Satsuma mandarins to use in this recipe, please visit www.burgesonfamilyfarm.com.

The sweetest Satsuma mandarins of the season. Available from our farm by prior arrangement.

By mid to late January, the Satsuma mandarin season is often over for us. We have usually sold all of the fruit, or the skins have become soft and the fruit does not meet our high standards. However this year we have a bumper crop, and the fruit has held up well on the trees and has ripened to perfection. The last few days, while picking this beautiful fruit, both of us have commented that these are the best Satsumas we have eaten all season, if not ever. Brix (sugar) refractometer readings in the orchard are often reading above 14. Those are some very high numbers and that means this fruit is extra sweet. Many Satsuma mandarin growers in California have sold out, but we will still have these “late harvest Satsumas” available for a few more weeks.

Now is the time to taste these “late harvest Satsuma mandarins” for yourself. We are available most days for sales by appointment. Click here for more info.

For those who are attempting to reduce their plastic footprint, we now sell our mandarins in a 10 pound box from the farm for the same price as our 10 pound mesh plastic bags. 15 dollars for the box. We also offer a 6 pound burlap sack of mandarins for 10 dollars. This sack is reusable and compostable and was made in the USA.

gift bag with copyright

In addition to Satsumas, we now are harvesting other delicious sweet citrus fruit that you can purchase if you come to visit us at the farm. We are still selling Meyer Lemons, Eureka Lemons and Washington Navel Oranges. We have a few of our “sweetie” Oro Blanco Grapefruit left but are almost sold out of those. We have just started to harvest our Sanguinelli Blood Oranges so we have a few available and more will be available for sale over the next few weeks.

Here is a little photo tour of what you will see if you come up to our farm to visit!

A few trees are still dripping with sweet Satsuma Mandarins waiting to be harvested.

mandarin-background-photo c

We have some of the largest, juiciest Meyer lemons and Eureka lemons that you have ever seen.

lemon tree with copyright

meyer-lemon wm

Our Sanguinelli blood oranges have started to color up. Still a bit tart with a raspberry flavor, they are perfect for use in savory recipes or for marmalade. As the season progresses they will get a bit sweeter and less tart.

blood-oranges cr

blood-orange-final with copyright

The last of our “sweetie” Oro Blanco grapefruit have been harvested and are tucked away in our walk in refrigerator. These have been very popular and we expect we will sell out by the end of the weekend. oro-blance-trimmed wm

We are also selling “seconds” which are mandarins with skin damage that must be peeled and frozen immediately for smoothies or squeezed for juice immediately as they will spoil within a few days. But these are discount priced at 75 cents per pound.

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frozen mandarins

A visit to our farm is a refreshing way to pick up your fruit for the week. Skip the grocery store parking lot hassles, the fluorescent lights and the fruits packaged in plastic and instead come out for a breath of fresh air and extra fresh fruit packed grown without harmful pesticides and packaged in sustainable packaging.   trees loaded wm

 

For more information about our farm and our growing practices check out this link.

If you would like to contact us for questions about ordering, or to be placed on our email list, please use this link.

Thank you for your interest in Burgeson Family Farm. We hope to see you soon!

http://www.burgesonfamilyfarm.com

Late harvest Satsuma Mandarins. Get them while you can.

mandarin-background-photo c

As we pass into January the frantic harvesting, packing and shipping of our Satsumas to fill those holiday orders is behind us as another successful year passes into memory.  That hectic pace of December has slowed, the weather has cooled, and all of us are ready for our long winter’s nap. Our Satsumas have been associated with holidays and gifts, as a special December treat, so it is easy to assume that mandarin season is over too. Many of our customers won’t be seen again until next December.

This year however, we have hundreds of pounds of Satsumas still on the trees waiting to be harvested. The cold nights and dry warm days of the past few weeks have provided the ideal conditions for developing the sugar and flavor in the fruit. Many trees had fruit that was “not ready yet” in December, and now that fruit is perfect.

We use a brix refractometer to measure sugar in the mandarins before harvesting, and 12 or above is the Japanese standard for Satsuma. In December, if the fruit reaches 12 and has no green on the skin and tastes good to us we will harvest it to sell. Many of the “late harvest Satsumas” have brix of 13 and above but just finally have turned from green to orange and softened in the acidity. These are some of the best fruit of the season.

Unfortunately these perfect fruit also will not last long on the trees. The rain, wind and cold of January can soften the skins and beat up the fruit and soon it will be too damaged to harvest. We harvested a big pick yesterday and will not be able to pick again until after the storms that are predicted over the next few days. If they survive the wind and rain of these storms, we still anticipate only a few weeks before all our mandarins will be too damaged to sell. Now is the time to taste these “late harvest Satsumas” before they are gone.

Please contact us to arrange a time to pick up your fruit. On the farm we also have Meyer Lemons, Eureka Lemons, Algerian Clementines,Oro Blanco grapefruit and Washington Navel Oranges available for sale.

We also continue to ship boxes of Satsuma mandarins. For more information click here.

Thanks for your support of our small family farm. We hope to see you up at the farm in the next few weeks. If not, we look forward to seeing you next year.

The Burgesons

www.burgesonfamilyfarm.com

Frozen Satsuma Smoothie

Satsuma Mandarin season is short and sweet. The fruit does not last very long on the trees after it is ripe, so we pick it as soon as possible. We will be harvesting mandarins for at least a few more weeks, and the fruit is extra sweet late in the season. This is the perfect time to save some mandarins for use throughout the year.

We like to peel the Satsumas, section them and freeze them on cookie sheets. Once they are frozen we seal them up in plastic baggies which we tuck away in the freezer to use later in the year. We also squeeze the juice and freeze it in ice cube trays or milk cartons to use later in cocktails or as juice for breakfast.

frozen mandarins

Gold from the freezer. This is the way to carry mandarin season into the summer!

Our favorite use for the chunks of frozen mandarin juice, or the mandarin sections we have frozen, is to make smoothies.  We start with a simple formula, equal parts frozen mandarin juice or frozen mandarin sections and milk. For example use 1 cup milk, 1 cup mandarin sections for 2 servings of about 1 cup each. We like to add a scoop of NorCal Organic (local) whey protein powder before blending it in our blender. This makes it extra fluffy and adds a protein boost for an easy breakfast.mandarin smoothie

Satsuma Mandarin Whey Protein smoothie. A delicious nutritious way to start the day.

You can use this basic recipe as a base for adding other ingredients. The mandarins are very sweet so no sweetener is needed, although you can add honey if you like. Frozen fruit such as blueberries, raspberries or banana are one way to mix it up. Sometimes we add vanilla or almond extract. Greek yogurt, vanilla flavored or plain, or adds another protein boost. Flax seed, wheat germ or hemp seed also add protein, B vitamins and essential fatty acids.  A handful of spinach or kale can give you a full meal in a glass.

We have extra ripe Satsumas, including “seconds” for half price, 75 cents per pound, available at our farm. These seconds are perfect for juicing or for peeling and freezing right away to use throughout the year. Contact us to arrange to pick yours up while we still have them available.

Wishing you a healthy and happy New Year!

New Years Cheer: Satsuma Mimosas and Cocktails

When we sort through our Satsumas before boxing and bagging them we pull out all of the seconds that are not of sufficient quality to sell. Some of them have damaged skin, or skin that is very soft, and some have hard green spots on the skin. We sell these
seconds for half price at the farm, 75 cents per pound. They are very perishable due to the skin damage so they should be cut and juiced, or peeled and sectioned soon after purchase.

We often peel and freeze the mandarin sections and used them throughout the year for smoothies. These mandarins are still very sweet and juicy however, so they also make great mandarin juice. We just cut them in half and juice them using a citrus juicer. You can even squeeze them by hand, they are so soft and juicy.

mandarin-juicew

Delicious fresh Satsuma Mandarin juice

This juice can be mixed with sparkling wine for a delicious Mimosa, or can be mixed with sparkling water for a non-alcoholic holiday toast.

We have also come up with some delicious cocktail recipes using the mandarin juice.

Sierra Sunset Cocktail

In addition to using the fresh squeezed mandarin juice, this recipe uses pomegranate juice, sweet sparkling wine such as Proseco, and Grand Marnier. The recipe for our home-made pomegranate juice is here:

https://burgesonfamilyfarm.com/2018/10/05/pomegranates-how-to-get-to-the-seeds-how-to-make-juice-2/

Fill a glass with crushed ice. Fill the glass with slightly less than 1/3 pomegranate juice, then add 1/3 sweet sparkling wine and 1/3 mandarin juice. Finally pour 1 Tablespoon of Grand Marnier over the top.

sierra-sunset-cocktailw

“Sierra Sunset Cocktail”

For a non alcoholic version, fill the glass with 1/3 pomegranate juice, 1/3 tonic water, and 1/3 mandarin juice.

Mandarin Vodka Tonic

Fill a glass with crushed ice. Mix 1/2 cup mandarin juice, 1/2 cup tonic water and 1 shot of vodka and pour over the ice.

mandarin-vodka-tonicw

“Mandarin Vodka Tonic”

You can also make a delicious Satsuma Mandarin Margarita.

Satsuma Mandarin Margarita

Mix together :

3 shots fresh squeezed Satsuma mandarin juice

1 shot white 100% agave tequila (such as Patron silver)

½ shot Cointreau

½ shot fresh squeezed lime juice

Pour this over ice in a glass and serve immediately.

mandarin-margarita-close-upw

If you would like to purchase our mandarins, please contact us using this link. We are open weekends from 12-4 and other times by appointment.

© 2013. Dayna Green-Burgeson RD, CDE. All Rights Reserved.

Reproduction of any content in the article without the written permission of the author is prohibited.

www.burgesonfamilyfarm.com

Our Shipped Boxes of Satsuma Mandarins

We are taking orders for shipped boxes of our sweet, seedless, delicious Satsuma Mandarins. When you place an order, the mandarins will be harvested, packed and shipped for you in a USPS flat rate box. Expect the mandarins within 3-7 business days from the time you order.  This is what to expect:

adrian-picking watermarked

The owner of the farm, Dayna, Adrian or Evan Burgeson, will hand pick the very best of the fruit from our Sierra foothill mandarin trees.

We will then take a USPS Priority Mail Flat Rate box and line it with another box. We will line that box with a soft liner. We do not use plastic in our packaging.

Box with liner

We will then hand select the mandarins to fit snugly in the box. We lay down one layer at a time. Sometimes we will put the mandarins sideways, or upside down to get a more snug fit. We may include both small and large mandarins to get a better fit so you receive the most weight for your money.partially filled box

Once the box is filled, we put our “Junior” mandarin and a card inside as a cheerful reminder that this box is from Burgeson Family Farm. The card also has information for the recipient regarding our growing practices and how to store the mandarins. filled box of mandarins

Finally the top layer is also covered with the wadding material for additional protection.

box with wadding on top  We then label the top of the box, close it up, seal it with packing tape and send it out right away, usually the very same day the box is packed.

closed box lid

We try to use all biodegradable and recyclable materials to ship your mandarins. We also attempt to use the minimum amount of packing material necessary to protect the fruit so you can receive the maximum amount of fruit for your money. On occasion a few mandarins may develop cracks in the skin during shipping, but if you open the box to examine the contents immediately upon receipt and eat those mandarins first they should still be fresh and delicious. We would rather use the mandarins themselves as “packing material” rather than using plastic bubble wrap, packing peanuts and other unsustainable materials to protect our mandarins when shipping.

If you would like to order shipped boxes of our Satsuma Mandarins please go to this link to read more about how to order.

Candied Mandarin Rind

Rind on wood tableDon’t toss out the rinds of our Satsuma Mandarins. They make delicious candied rinds to eat as a treat or to use in baked goods or candy. We love to make panforte out of our candied mandarin rinds.

For success with this recipe I recommend you have a candy thermometer or an instant read thermometer to check the temperature of the syrup throughout the process. You also should have some parchment paper, non-stick spray or vegetable oil or shortening, a good sized saucepan with a lid, and some type of heatproof strainer. Optional items are a cooling rack, and a dehydrator.

Ingredients are only the rinds, lots of sugar, and water.

When you are peeling the Satsumas, it is easy to keep the rinds in large pieces since the rinds usually separate so easily from the fruit. Larger rinds will be easier to candy although if you plan to use chopped rind in panforte or another recipe you can also chop the rind before candying it. In this case you may not cook it to quite as high of a temperature in the final step (try 225-230 instead of 240), as it may fall apart.  When I do that, I use it right away in recipes after draining it as chopped rind is harder to dry and store.

As you are eating the Satsumas, save your large nice looking rinds in a plastic bag in the refrigerator until you have enough to make a batch. For many of our customers this does not take very long! Remove any stem ends and slice or chop if desired, or leave in good sized pieces (¼ to 1/3 of a total mandarin rind is a good size)

peels

Once you have about 6-7 cups of rinds, you are ready to candy them.

Cover the rinds with a lot of water; you cannot really use too much so a large stockpot is useful here. Bring the water to a boil, boil for 10 minutes, then drain the rinds. Do this one more time. This softens the rinds and removes some of the bitterness. Note, mandarins can have much softer rinds than other citrus so use your judgement here. If the rinds are very soft and thin you may need to shorten the boiling time or only use one boil. Make sure they do not get so soft that they will fall apart in the next step.

boiling the peel

Once the rind has been softened by boiling, drain it and set aside.

drained peels

Now, in a medium to large sized saucepan, make a syrup using 3 cups water to 6 cups sugar. The height of the syrup should not be more than about ¼ up the sides of the pan. This allows room for boiling and for adding the rinds. Stir the sugar into the water, and gradually heat it making sure it dissolves. There should be no sugar crystals on the side of the pan so wash it down with a pastry brush with water or put a lid on the pan for a few minutes to let the steam build up to wash down the sides.  Be careful not to let the pan boil over.

sugar syrup

Once the sugar is well dissolved, raise the temperature of the syrup to a rolling boil and continue to boil until it has reached the “thread stage” which is 230 F on a candy thermometer.

Now add the rind to the pan and stir it in. Tuck the rind under the syrup as best you can so it is all being infused in the syrup.

rind in syrup

Put a piece of parchment paper over the rind to help hold it under the syrup.

parchment over the rind

Now let the rind slowly simmer in the syrup for about 1 hour. Once in a while you may want to remove the paper and gently stir the rind a bit and tuck it under the syrup again to make sure all of it gets infused with the syrup.

NOTE: Excessive stirring can break up the rind, and also cause sugar crystallization so a gentle touch with minimal stirring is important in this recipe.

After one hour, remove the parchment and raise the heat to a good rolling boil. Cook the rind in the syrup, giving it a gentle stir on occasion, especially making sure it does not burn at the bottom, until the syrup thickens and reaches the firm soft ball stage which is 240-245 range on the candy thermometer. Note: If the syrup gets very thick and stirring any more is breaking up the rind, causing it to turn to mush, or if the rind has absorbed most of the syrup, stop cooking it even if it has not reached 240. Anything above 230 should be fine.

Rind in syrup finished

Now remove the rind from the syrup. The easiest way to do this is to strain it in a strainer that has relatively large openings for the syrup to go through, or to remove it from the syrup with a slotted spoon. Be careful, the syrup is very hot and can burn you.

Separate the rinds out on parchment that has been sprayed with non-stick spray or oil, and let them cool. You may want to spoon them onto the paper when they are still hot, then let them sit until they can be touched at which time you can separate them from each other. If they cool all the way while stuck together you will have a hard time separating them.

rind on parchment

To dry further you can put them on a drying rack that has been sprayed with non-stick spray or oil, and put them in a warm dry place. You can also dry them at 100-110 in a dehydrator or in an oven set on the dehydrator setting or with the oven light on. Once they are no longer sticky they are ready.

Rind on racks

To store the rind, refrigerate it or put it in an airtight container and store at room temperature. Make sure it is kept very dry. You can layer it with sugar to help keep it dry. Keep an eye on it and do not store it too long though because if moisture builds up it can occasionally grow mold and spoil.

Use in recipes or serve as is.finished rind

Our Satsumas are not sprayed with any pesticides or herbicides or fungicides so the rinds are safe to eat. Although we are not certified organic, everything we use on our crop, even our fertilizer, meets organic certification standards through OMRI   We typically do not spray anything on our mandarins except an occasional one time per season use of an organic oil spray to protect the rinds if a lot of rain is predicted. We use hoeing, weedeating and flaming to control weeds under the trees, not herbicides

To order a box of our mandarins shipped use this link. If you would like to pick them up at our farm, contact us using this link.

For more about our farm visit our website www.burgesonfamilyfarm.com