Mandarin’s are members of the citrus family just like our Dried Oranges and Satsuma Segments but they each taste slightly different. Satsuma’s are tiny versions of regular oranges, and they have a tart, tangy and slightly sweet flavour, whereas Dried Mandarin’s are considered overall sweeter and richer.
We grow Encore Mandarin’s which are a late-ripening variety originating from a cross between King Tagor and Willowleaf Mandarin made by H.B. Frost and was introduced in 1965. This variety is seldom found commercially due to it’s multiple seeds which make drying an arduous task, and the difficulty to produce them without ‘rind spots’ which makes them considered unpleasing on the eye. Here in Portugal however they are regarded highly, by those who know citrus, for their superior flavour.
As with all citrus varieties Encore Mandarins are know to contain Vitamin’s C, B6, Thiamin & Folate as well as Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorous and Copper.
Since these Dried Mandarin Pieces, like all our Dried Fruit, contain no preservatives they are dried to a very low moisture content. Other Dried Fruit manufacturer’s add moisture and preservatives after drying to stop food from spoiling and to create a heavier and artificially juicier product. With our Dried Fruit you get a healthy product with nothing added as well as more for your money. These Mandarin pieces are the perfect snack out of the packet or added chopped to Muesli or homemade Granola. They are also delicious soaked in a little water and added to cakes and yogurt.
This product is GM & Gluten Free, and produced using no chemicals
Our Mandarin’s are picked between March and April which is later than most citrus meaning that they actually mature on the tree for a longer period of time. After picking and washing they are simply divided into segments by hand before being laid out to air dry in our specially equipped machines. After 12 hours the pips are removed by hand before the drying continues for a total of 24 hours. Even though we try our very best to remove every pip please be aware that occasionally one may remain.
Since we started making Dried Fruit here at Sunny's we have constantly adapted to our customers needs. We are happy to announce our New Orange Fruit Leathers now contain 20% Sharon Fruit & 10% Pear for a slightly sweeter yet still authentic Dried Orange experience. Still Naturally Grown By Us - we're making them from our 2016 harvest right now!!
We are happy to announce that not only can you buy great quality dried fruit snacks from our website 24/7 but you can now also purchase them from the following Farm Shops in the U.K.
Little Heath Farm Shop
Windy Arbour Farm Shop
Red Bank Farm Shop
Riverside Organic Farm
Shipbrook Hill Farm
Toogood Farm Shop
If you're lucky enough to live near Cheshire why not check them out. Also as well as buying direct from us in Silves, you can find our products at the following Health Food Shops in Portugal.
Rua Francisco Menezes nº5
Saruga Mercearia Saudável
Praceta Infante D. Henrique
Loja 6A e 6 B
In recent years we have completed several drying experiments with fruits which we grow but have never actually tried to incorporate into our products before. Quince, Sharon Fruit and Loquat have all worked well and have recently made it into our new Mixed Dried Fruit packets. Guava has also been another revelation, but by far the biggest surprise has come from our Pomegranate trees. Since making a come back as a super food Pomegrante has become very popular, and we are particularly surprisd by their ability to dry extremely well into a great healthy snack. We are now looking into including several more Pomegranate trees into our orchard so we can produce more of this chewy, nutty treat.
Forest Garden Update
With temperatures slowly rising in the Algarve and the winter seeming like a distant memory we have now begun the next phase of our Forest Garden planting. Since we have been at Sunny's we have been selectively allowing naturally sown trees such as olive, pomegranate & fig to continue to grow amongst our citrus orchard. Now we are grafting of some of these un-edible varieties to commercial types as well as interplanting with fruit trees and shrubs which we have produced ourselves. This week we have been planting Carob, Apple, Apricot and two plum varieties Stanley & Black Diamond. These edible crops will hopefully allow us to diversify our future product range and help us create a more natural orchard which will attract pollinators throughout the year and give a home to a greater diversity of life. We have also planted several nitrogen fixing varieties and will soon be planting legumas shrubs all of which will help keep fertility in the orchard and enable us to continue on the Bio-dynamic path of obtaining as little as possible from outside of our land