Color affects both emo­tions and mood. Win­ter is no rea­son to for­feit bright col­ors. It may well be the absolute best time of year to strut the most vibrant hues on the color chart.

Cit­rus is at peak of sea­son in avail­abil­ity and taste. Use the many vari­eties to lift spir­its, boost immu­nity and improve menus.

Out of hand snack­ing is made con­ve­nient with portable “easy peel” vari­etals. This includes navel oranges, man­darins and tan­ger­ines.

Navel oranges have a sunny fla­vor with a touch of acid­ity. These seed­less fruits are per­fect for mak­ing any dreary day a bit cheerier. A fan favorite, they are burst­ing with unreal juicy sweet­ness.

Cara Cara oranges are very sweet with pinkish-​red fruit flesh. They have hints of berry and flo­ral fla­vors for a cit­rus change of pace. Con­sider seg­ments added to yogurt, com­potes and desserts.

Blood Oranges have a slight acid­ity bal­anced with sweet­ness. The ruby red fruit flesh and aroma is cap­ti­vat­ing. They add drama to drinks (cham­pagne or cock­tails), excite­ment to sal­ads and pair well with part­ners (beets, fen­nel and avo­ca­dos).

Man­darins and tan­ger­ines are the sweet­hearts of the fam­ily. Young and old enjoy the com­pact size, zip peels and espe­cially the burst of fla­vor that these small gems pro­vide. Clemen­tines, Sat­sumas or Mur­cotts — grab two or three for an after­noon snack or lunch break. Bite-​sized seg­ments make them con­ve­nient.

Pum­me­los, also known as Chi­nese grape­fruits, are the largest of the cit­rus fruits. They range in size from a small can­taloupe to nearly the size of a bas­ket­ball. They are slightly pear-​shaped, green­ish to yellow-​pink and thick skin. The flesh may be white, pink or rose red and has a sweet and tart fla­vor with­out the bit­ter­ness of a grape­fruit.

Pink Var­ie­gated Lemons are dis­tinctly tart. They have a unique yel­low and green striped rind with pink fruit flesh. Largely used for gar­nish­ing drinks or desserts, they’re less tart than reg­u­lar lemons. The blush-​pink flesh adds a fruity and flo­ral note.

Meyer Lemons are pleas­ingly tart with a nice bal­ance of sweet­ness. They have a thin, bright yel­low or orange-​tinted rind. They’re great for mak­ing tangy pre­served lemons with many appli­ca­tions in soups, stews, entrees and sal­ads. Frozen con­fec­tions are bet­ter with win­ter Meyer lemons.

Jan­u­ary menus revolve around more health­ful ingre­di­ents. From eat­ing fish and seafood to more sal­ads and veg­eta­bles, bring cit­rus into the meal plan. Paint the plate with a splash of color and zest.

A solu­tion to stay­ing hydrated dur­ing colder months is to con­sume more cit­rus. This can be a chal­lenge for many adults. Add a slice of orange or yel­low to a glass of water or hot tea.

Win­ter cit­rus fruits stim­u­late our senses and embolden the kitchen. Eat, juice, slice, grate and squeeze away. Bright lights in every bite.

To read the full Mar­ket Report, includ­ing this week’s mar­ket update, see below or click here.
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