Sunday, April 29, 2012

Scary Mandarin and Annoying Orange - Random Sunday

When I was a kid, every Chinese New Year, we wil buy a box of TeoChew Mandarins. Grandaunt will ask us to keep all the peels and she will dry them in the sun. The sundried peels will be kept in old Milo tins. Grandaunt uses the dried peels in sweet soups and some dishes. But whatever we dry is more than we ever need.

There's lots of annoying oranges on YouTube.I bet you have heard of that annoying citrus.

*Warning: Video is not for the faint hearted

That's the english version. See a Cantonese version of it.
I super love how annoying it is. Makes me want to slap it left and right, but yet kiss it on both cheeks too!

Ok.. now back to my mandarin.I have with me a scary mandarin. What makes it scary?

This mandarin has been around in my house before Chinese New Year.
One of my girls brought it back from Kindergarden and was playing with it like a ball. It's been rolling and rolling around the hall for more than 2 months.

One day I found this stuck under the sofa, but it's already end of March. It still looks good, perfectly good........... on the outside. Even the stem tip is still GREEN!

Take note:
My room temperature : 26C-30C
My living room's humidity : 60%-90%
Of which is perfect for fungal growth.

And so.... I broke the mandarin to see how it is inside. The skin felt as if it was just bought yesterday, but....

The inside is all dried up and icky.

I wonder if they dipped the fruit in formalin? Eeeeeee.. what did they do to the fruit?
For now, it's a total ban in my kitchen for the use of mandarin peels.

My kumquats once left on the tree rots within weeks after ripening. Both rind and flesh, together.
My locally grown limes once left without referigeration turns dry and brown within 2 weeks.
For those of you who use yongchun mandarin oranges for offering on the ancestor's altar, they do wrinkle up and feel soggy after a few days right?

This one that has been under my sofa for 2 months, been thrown around like a ball, been exposed to summer temperatures with perfect humidity for fungal growth.....................stays beautiful, firm and fresh on the outside, but rots on the inside.

It's really scary.

But then I think not all are like this. Some mandarin oranges still and do wrinkle up and spoil.
But not this one that I have.
The problem is, I never know which one is scary, which one isn't. Not until months later, under my sofa.


  1. thats why ppl is dying in very young age..looking back to our ancestor who ate those natural foods was more healthy than ppl nowadays. sigh~

  2. This is why whenever we want to use the orange peel make sure to scrub it clean to consume it. I know they put layer of wax for the orange and even to apples too.

  3. Provided to grow ur orange ur self is better not to use the skin as is loaded with pesticide n wax

  4. Janetan,
    very true

    If it's being treated with formalin,
    No scrubbing will ever get rid of it.

    My orange tree is slowly very slowly growing.

  5. My parents dry those mandarin peels for agesss making sure all the chemicals n etc are all gone!

  6. OMG! Wendy..they are so annoying. I have to put up with it cos my kids love to watch them..Urgh..makes me wanna pull my hair out!

  7. We never like dried orange peel, luckily! Nowadays I hesitate to take foods from China. Even the herbs that we use to boil soup, they might add some chemical to extend their shelf life...

  8. My kids like to watch d video... i always feel uneasy with that particular scary orange..

  9. Formalin? I sell lots of that lol! Didn't know they are used as a preservative! Errr...those videos are sort entertaining lol!

  10. Food is our religion,
    I hope that method works

    What's Baking,
    It's not very kid friendly actually, quite violent.

    Yawoh.... they dare to do everything one. Scary

    The annoying orange is soooooo ugly. Hahaha!

    Ah? U dunno the use of formalin?
    I use that back in school to preserve my Biology field collections.
    I did get to know from a friend that her uncle who farms dragonfruit washes the fruit with a chemical to extend its shelf life... eeeeek!
    Whether that chemical is formalin, I was not told, but the farmer told my friend not to eat the fruit.

  11. It is not formalin, i seen how they process the mandarins and it is safe for consumptions. The growers is so poor till they can't even afford to buy formalin. The fruits had been harvest and wash, and dried up properly. In China, they sell mandarins till May. In US, they sell Apples all year round but they only harvest once a year, similar to Mandarins. It is CA stocks.

  12. When I visited my friend in Munich, she showed me apples that she had harvested a few months before. They last so long on their own without any preservatives or chemicals. This one I know for sure as it's from my friend's garden! I have a pic here to show you

  13. Yea, I won't use the dried orange peel if possible. I think they use some chemical to preserve the skin of the oranges so that from the outside it looks fresh. The mandarin orange under your sofa proved a point..right? :) Thanks for sharing the orange video...quite entertaining :)))

  14. Anonymous,
    Oh yes, the farmers are very poor.
    They are so poor that they can afford to pay for printed cartons, get a computer with internet connection to do international business.
    It's continously sold there until May because they are picked off the trees. I'm sure one season lasts for months, just like a peach season can be 2-3 months long.
    Here, mandarin oranges are sold before Chinese New Year only for a few weeks.
    There's something called middle man or exporters.
    And about those year old apples, I bet they were waxed, kept in temperature, humidity controlled warehouses that had their air filtered of spores.
    This mandarin was under my sofa, with perfect rind but rotten innards.

    What's the temperature there in Munich?
    What's the humidity there?
    Is the outside nice but inside rotten?
    I bet your friend's apples are still beautiful inside and out.
    And If they can cure pancetta out in the open, then for sure I can cure mine under the sofa.

    Yes, it was under the sofa.
    The troubling thing is that, the difference of the outside and inside. If it's rotten inside, how can it be so beautiful outside? Right?
    They should be rotting together.

  15. HAHAHA aw that's so cute wendy! thanks for sharing this little tidbits with us, made my sunday(:

  16. Wendy, thanks and good for sharing yr discovery. Really scary, ppl rushing & paying for the fruit during the season and never know what they really get. Worse is the after effects of consuming them.
    Some food/fruits are very 'costly' in the long run when we think in terms of medical fees due to long term consumption of those 'treated' food.

  17. huh, scary indeed. Gonna ask my hubby to read this because he eats tonnes of madarin every CNY season. He bought boxes of them and ate them all by himself!

  18. Shu Han,
    that orange is absolutely irritating but lovable too, LOL

    Actually so many things are treated nowadays, not only this

    I think inside is ok. See the flesh actually spoils. You don't eat the skin right?

  19. When you know the ugly truth about how China "preserve" the mandarin orange and keep all their stock freeesh till CNY season, so that they will have enough stock to supply the world's demand, you will not wanna eat them again. I used to be a freight forwarder. Knowing how we helped the China people to stuff the Mandarin Oranges into the container and sail to Singapore & Malaysia... Hmm... My advise, better not to eat too much. I stopped eating them ever since I knew about it :)

  20. You know if you're careful to keep it dry so as to not let it go mouldy, you can completely dry out an orange (or similar) until it's a totally dry hard shell of a fruit that will pretty much last indefinitely.

  21. Justin,
    Unfortunately this mandarin's skin is still soft and supple with its innards dry, It's like having botoxed. Is there anything that can be soft on the outside but dry on the inside.
    The commentor above is dealing with imports of mandarin oranges from China and she has told me how the process is done.
    It's not comparable to how oranges are imported in. It's totally a different story.

  22. This CNY, you can...

    try and stuff a couple more of those mandarins say, 10 under the sofa and wait. See just how many will turn out all dried up on the inside :)

    'dont judge a mandarin by its peel"


  23. azura.jalal,
    well, if you read my post thorough enough,
    I did say in my final paragraph,
    "Not all are like this"
    I didn't judge the mandarin by its peel, that's why I opened it up to see the inside,
    And that's what the idiom means, do not judge a book by its cover, ..........but read it.
    I opened it.
    If I were to judge this mandarin by its peel, I'll just say it's a very beautiful mandarin that lasted for months, very good! very good!

  24. Thanks for your information about mandarin oranges. At least we are more aware what's in our commercial food.


Thanks for dropping by my blog.
All comments are greatly appreciated.

If you have tried any of the recipes and blogged about it, please provide a link so that others may have a look at it too :)

Please select profile and click "Name/URL" if u do not have any profiles on any of those listed, type in the name (leave the URL empty)

It's not nice to call you ANONYMOUS, so please leave a name.
From 15/11/13 onwards, I will NOT reply comments with no name.

Only comments on posts older than 24 hours will be moderated :)
You won't see them appearing immediately if it's not a fresh post.

New Youtube Channel

Now that my home's internet speed is upgraded, I can make more videos!
This is my new channel
Please subscribe!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...