Have you ever eaten “Mikan”? If I ask this question Japanese, most people will answer YES. Mikan is very popular fruits in Japan. However, Mikan is not very common in the world…Bananas and Apples are so popular all over the world…!! Anyway, if you know about Mikan, you will just eat it. You are losing a lot of money!! I would like to introduce basic knowledge and how to enjoy Mikan you don’t know.
1. What is “Mikan”?
Mikan is any evergreen shrubby plant of the genus mikan family and its fruits. It sounds a little difficult, but in short, it is a generic term for citrus trees born in Japan. Mikan is winter fruits, and you can enjoy a variety kind from September to March. Mikan can be divided into four groups depending on the harvest season. The earliest harvested between September and October is “Goku-wase Mikan”. “Wase Mikan” comes out from October to November. In December, it changes to “Nakate Mikan” and “Okute Mikan”, and the skin grows thicker and longevity becomes longer.
Mikan is rich in vitamin C and it is effective in preventing rough skin and colds. It also includes pectins that improve constipation. Bags and white muscles contain ingredients that are said to be effective for hypertension and arteriosclerosis. The β-cryptoxanthin content, a type of carotenoid, is the highest among fruits. β-cryptoxanthin acts as vitamin A in the body and maintains digestion and vision. β-cryptoxanthin is also expected to have an effect of inhibiting carcinogenesis and aging.How many varieties dose “Mikan” have?
2. How many varieties dose “Mikan” have?
To be honest, it is very difficult to explain easily. What we call “Mikan” is precisely the “Unshu Mikan” cultivar, and the others are citrus that are similar in line to Unshu Mikan. Although there are some detailed regulations, I will give you a little rough thinking here. Many varieties are cultivated, and it is said that more than 80 kinds are grown in Japan alone. When you say “mikan” in one bite, it has its own characteristics and tastes.
Today, I’d like to introduce three kinds of Mikan that I recommend!
- Dekopon (Shiranui)
I like Decopon the best. It is characterized by a bulky infarction. Because of its appearance, it is called “Sumo” overseas. It has a strong sweetness, a moderate acidity and a rich taste. The flesh is soft and juicy and has a ponkan-like aroma. The fruit weighs about 200-280g.The seeds are basically not included, but they are rare.
It is characterized by its mild acidity and sweetness and orange flavor. It is rich in fruit juice and smooth to the palate, easily peeled off by hand and eaten in a bag like a Mikan. It weighs about 150-200g and looks like an orange-like Unshu Mikan. It’s basically seedless, but sometimes it’s in there. Raw food is the best way to savor the sweetness and aroma of Harehime, but you can enjoy the mild flavor of juice, jam (marmalade) and jelly.
It is popular as a gift, and it is expensive, it will cost more than 1,000 yen. The pericarp is a little dark orange and about 250g in size. It has a high sugar content, a mild acidity, and a rich and excellent flavor. Flesh is soft and rich in juice. The membrane of the gourd is very thin and can be eaten in a bag. Enjoy the soft and juicy sweetness while it’s fresh. There are basically no seeds. You can also enjoy a slightly luxurious taste when you use it for toppings such as cakes and tarts. If there is a lot of food, I recommend jam (marmalade).
3. Where are “Mikan” made?
Wakayama Prefecture is the No. 1 Mikan Yield in Japan. The percentage of yields by prefecture is 19.45% for Wakayama Prefecture, 16.23% for Ehime Prefecture, and 11.56% for Kumamoto Prefecture. These three prefectures account for about 50% of the country.
The Mikan harvest is 1 million tons and the shipment are 741,300 tons.
4. Choose delicious “Mikan” and keep them wisely!
There are 6 characters of delicious Mikan!!
- Flat and heavy
- Have a good tone of pericarp
- The skin is thin
- The edge of the collar is small and the color is lighter
- Smaller sizes tend to be more sweet
- Avoid sunburned
<method of preservation>
Avoid direct sunlight or heating and store in a cool, dark place with good ventilation. It may be wrapped lightly in a newspaper or something. It lasts about 5 to 10 days depending on the variety and condition. If the acidity is strong, leave it for a few days and the acidity will soften a little. If you put it in the refrigerator, put it in a plastic bag or other container to prevent drying before entering the vegetable room. It can be wrapped in newspaper and put in a plastic bag to prevent drying. When refrigerated, be careful not to dry and cool too much.
5. 5ways to enjoy “Mikan”
- Body massage with Mikan peel
In fact, Mikan peel is excellent for herbal medicine. If you use it for body massage, you can expect effects such as coldness and neuralgia. It is said that massage with a cloth bag containing Mikan skin will increase the effect.
- Mikan bath
Just pour boiling water on the Mikan, put it in a gauze bag, soak it in a bathtub. The scent of Mikan has an effect of increasing happiness and relaxing, so I highly recommend it for taking a bath before sleep. Also, it can expect a beautiful skin effect, so it’s a great bathing method for women who are concerned about their skin condition.
- Tangerine deodorant
If you put dried tangerine peel in the place where the smell accumulates, it becomes a deodorant!
In the kotatsu, in the closet…When you put your feet in the kotatsu, it smells good. I think I’ll be able to relax more and more.
- Mikan fertilizer
Mikan peel is fertilizer. You can just use it, but in the ground, Dry the Mikan as it takes a long time to break down the oil. Finely chop the dried tangerine peel and mix it in the soil. There is still a lot of nutrients left in the tangerine skin! Let’s reuse it and make delicious vegetables.
- Baked Mikan.
Baked Mikan are just as the name suggests. Why do you bake delicious Mikan while they are still there? That’s because Mikan is sweeter when heated. The sugar content will increase from 8.1 to 9.1. The absorption rate of dietary fiber such as pectin contained in mandarin is also better. In addition, when you bake it with the skin, it’s hard to break vitamin C because it’s protected by the skin, so it’s good to bake it with the skin. So, make sure to bake the baked tangerines with the skin!
温州みかん 蜜柑 Mandarin, 果物ナビ < https://www.kudamononavi.com/zukan/mikan.htm>