Oranges are sun-kissed fruit that we can find in our local supermarket all year round. We almost take this fruit for granted, but they are one of the most nutritious fruits out there. This vibrant fruit has other particular relatives such as the clementine, Mandarin, and tangerines.
Did you know that despite being called the mandarin orange, It is not an orange? Because the orange that we know is a hybrid between two citrus fruit trees, namely the mandarin and the pomelo. The orange was first cultivated in Southern China in 314 BC. Since then, this citrus fruit has been hybridized, re-hybridized, and altered. That’s why today, there are several orange varieties throughout the world. In this article, we are going to give you a guide to the most common orange types.
- Valencia Orange – This type of orange was first cultivated in southern California during the mid-19th century. Even if the Valencia orange is one of the most common oranges in the United States, it is only harvested during the summer season from March to July. This orange has a delightful taste with low acidity levels and a bright orange color. This is also one of the most common juice oranges.
- Navel Orange – It’s not clear where the navel orange was first cultivated, but it is one of the most popular oranges that is consumed in the United States. The naval orange got its name because its tip has a somewhat resembles a belly button. The navel orange is often seedless, and their trees often come from cuttings rather than plantings. Navel oranges tend to be a little bitter compared to the Valencia orange, and it also has a harder and thicker peel.
- Heirloom Navel Orange – You probably think that this type of orange is an older variety of the navel orange, but you’re wrong. Heirloom navels are Washington orange navels, which is the same variety as the navel orange. The only difference is that some growers like to take the name seriously. They only use rootstock that came from sour orange trees, which produce a lower yield navel oranges with superior flavor.
- Lima Orange – This type of orange is one of the common examples of an acidless orange, but it doesn’t wholly lack acid. It’s just that their acid content is shallow. That’s why lima oranges are one of the sweetest oranges in the world. It has a reasonably light orange-colored flesh along with a thick peel and some seeds.
- Bergamot Orange – It might have a green color, but it’s definitely orange. The extract of this type of orange is often used in Earl Grey tea. This is actually a hybrid between a bitter orange and a lemon. It usually comes in lime-green or yellowish color and it sometimes ha a lumpy skin. The juice of the Bergamot orange can be very sour.
- Bitter Orange – The bitter orange comes from an entirely different lineage, and it is also derived from a hybrid of the mandarin and pomelo. The bitter orange is also known as the sour orange or Seville orange because it completely lacks sweetness. That’s why it’s not always eaten or juiced. The peel of the bitter orange is often used as a flavoring or spice because it’s exceptionally fragrant. In fact, in the United Kingdom, you can often see bitter orange in a marmalade. In other parts of Europe, sour oranges are used to flavor beers or as a dessert spice.
- Cara Cara Orange – The car cara is considered to be the prettiest oranges. This is a type of a navel orange, and it is sometimes called the red navel or pink navel. The cara cara was first discovered in Valenzuela in 1976. It has a delightful taste with a hint of berry flavor. Plus, it has a luscious pink color.
- Blood Orange – The blood orange is considered to be a natural mutation of the regular orange because it has a deep red flesh, which indicates that it contains high amounts of antioxidants called anthocyanins. There are quite a handful of blood oranges types, but their closest relatives in the fruit world are the saguinello and more plant. Black oranges are not that sweet, but they have a delicious raspberry after taste.
- Clementine – The clementine is one of the cutest and sweetest oranges out there. This type of salmon is named after the French missionary, who discovered this type of orange in Algeria. The clementine orange is tiny, seedless, and very sweet orange.