Have you ever seen this thing in the produce department? Typically, you’ll find it in natural food stores, like Whole Foods. I’ve noticed it for quite a few years, but never did more than pick one up. Recently, I got one just to see what it was all about.
The ugli fruit is also called the uniq fruit. The name comes from the fact that it’s so weird looking. That it certainly is.
I knew that it was a sort of citrus and probably pretty close to a grapefruit. I don’t particularly like grapefruit, but once in a while I’ll have some.
I’m actually not a huge fan of citrus in general. I think there’s something about the texture that just doesn’t work for me.
I like mandarins and tangerines occasionally. So that’s probably the reason I didn’t try it sooner. Now that I have, though, I’m very glad I did!
The ugli fruit was found growing wild in Jamaica. It’s a hybrid that occurred naturally. The name is actually a registered trademark of Cabel Hall Citrus Ltd, who calls the fruit a tangelo. A tangelo is a hybrid of a tangerine and a pomelo or grapefruit. When a grapefruit, an orange, and a tangerine hybridize you get the ugli fruit!
I was expecting it to taste tart like a grapefruit. It’s actually surprisingly sweet. But it’s not nearly as sweet as an orange or a tangerine. The amount of sweetness is nice. You don’t need to sprinkle any sugar on the fruit. It can be eaten just as it is.
It doesn’t have any seeds, which makes eating it all that much more pleasurable. It’s got a good amount of juice and I bet that if you squeezed one it would make a very refreshing drink.
I cut it in half and just spooned it out like a grapefruit. It was excellent for breakfast! And it didn’t hurt that it reminded me of warmer days in the tropics!
The fruit is in season from December to April, but I think I’ve seen it year-round at the store. Now that I know what it’s all about I’ll be enjoying it more often.
If you haven’t tried the ugli fruit before, why not pick one up the next time you see it and give it a try?