From Fall to Winter – Archives Contest

From the archives:  Decided to bring back some older posts that were written when this blog began and there were only a handful of readers.  Enjoy!  And there might be a quiz!  (with a prize)

Before we move totally away from Fall and on to the first official day of Winter, I want to show you what abounds here. Unlike the northern part of the country, where I imagine there are pumpkins everywhere, we harvest a few different things . . .

. . . like pecans, satsumas, and sugarcane.

On a cool evening, in houses up and down the bayou, folks sit in their “front rooms” cracking and eating pecans, peeling and sucking satsumas, and cutting and chewing sugar cane. These satsumas came from a lady a couple bayous east of here. The pecans came from my neighbor’s trees and my mother-in-law’s trees; and she grows the sugarcane in her back yard. Talk about healthy snacks?

If you’re from north of Alexandria, LA, you might not have ever heard of a satsuma, much less tasted one. Once you eat a satsuma, you will never want another orange or tangerine again. At least that’s what satsumas did to me. Their season is short-lived, so we have to consume them in mass quantities while we can!

Satsumas, considered a “citrus mutant” originated in Japan and were supposedly brought to America by the wife of an ambassador. I don’t care how they got here, I’m just glad they did.

If you haven’t had one, I’ll try to do my best in describing them, contrasting them with the familiar. They are smaller than oranges and bigger than tangerines. They are sweeter than tangerines, and milder than oranges. They are very fleshy, but not overly juicy. They are much easier to peel–and some people even eat the skin, because it has a it’s not bitter like other citrus.

And the thing I like best of all? They are almost seedless. You just section those babies out, and let her rip!! Cut a section into small bits, and you have a fantastic finger food for toddlers. Can you tell I LOVE satsumas?

Probably the main reason you don’t see satsumas in wide-spread retail markets is because of their loose skin–bruises are not immediately obvious to the buyer. In America, if something is bruised, we won’t eat it. Therefore, buyers consider it a “hit and miss” citrus. Truth is, there are many small orchards here in South Louisiana, and they do quite well selling at open markets and roadside stands.

Another reason there are no huge orchards is that the trees will freeze, and occasionally it gets below 32 F here. I’ve seen people place 55-gallon drums between rows of trees with fires blazing in them to keep the trees from freezing.

The other sad truth is when we suffer a hurricane tidal surge, the trees may not survive the saltwater inundation. Mine died from the saltwater affects from the five-foot flood after Hurricane Rita in 2005. Here’s my backyard one week after the storm . . .


So, the satsumas are about to finish their season–just in time for the first day of winter. I wish I could ship you some, but you’ll just have to take my word for it—they are out-of-this-world delicious!!!

Here are the quiz questions:  What is the original date of this post, how many comments were there, who was the person who had never had a satsuma, where did sugar cane in the photo come from?  First correct answers wins a bag of Camp Dularge pecans, cracked and ready to shell.  Hurry, hurry!  BONUS:  Anyone who plays the contest and gets a friend to become a new reader and leave a comment saying they’re a new reader, will also receive a gift of pecans, if they so desire.  It’s a DAILY DOUBLE!!!  But you might have to share your pecans with your friend 🙂


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  1. AHHH,I did find it BW but as I still have Pecans in the freezer from last year I will pass it on to someone else to enjoy,good thing I put up a lot last year because the limb rats cut all this years crop down before they were ready.

      1. Crabbing has slowed a little for us do to the cold but should pick back up as soon as all these below freezing nights quit,(some nice 80 degree days would help too} Still doing fair though,had 7 boxes last trip with half being big males.

  2. What a lovely treasure hunt….it sent me to reading all your past posts with ‘satsuma’ in the entry. I’d forgotten how we used to gobble them down around Christmas time when I was a little girl and we lived in Harahan, La. Thank you for the lovely memory ride, BW!

    1. Orig post: Dec 12, 2007
    2. 4 comments
    3. It seems etrish/Trish had never eaten one.
    4. Sugarcane from mom-in-law’s yard

    Mmmmmm, candied spiced pecans—here I come!!

  3. Well, that didn’t take long enough! Should have done the “random drawing’ of all correct responses. But I’m a woman of my word, so Musing Egret gets the pecans! Email me your addy again, M.E.

    Now, anyone manage to get a new friend to read and comment? One more bag of pecans waiting . . .


  4. Well, it looks like I’ve already missed out! LOL

    Satsumas, huh? Oh, man, I love my citrus and I’ll bet those things ARE yummy. Eating the skin makes me think of kumquats. When I can get them, which isn’t often. Too bad satsumas can’t be shipped.

    Sugar cane. I haven’t had cane in so long, it ain’t funny. I’ve never spotted any at the farmer’s markets. Admittedly, I don’t hit them all, so someone out there may sell them.

    My Papah (paternal granddad) used to grow them on his farm. Years before I was born, it was to make and sell the syrup. By the time I came along, he just had a small patch for treats.

    I remember many a time, sitting with him, my Dad or my uncles and them whipping out the ever-present pocket knife, peeling and cutting up cane for us to chew on.

  5. Wait a minute, bags of cracked pecans??? What a way to get out of peeling pecans, lol. I like satsumas too but, my neighbor grows the absolute best tasting citrus ever, his tangerines make satsumas taste like sawdust. I would have shared a few with you but the kids and I inhaled them.

  6. I love chewing sugar cane! Haven’t had it in several years. I always bought a small stalk each year for my kids. I sometimes see it in the fall in the grocery store in about 10-12″ pieces. But, they put wax on it. UGH. I know it is to seal it but, it just doesn’t look as good.

  7. Trying to see if I can get a picture to work BW but I had to register a different user name.


    1. Hm. Sorry to hear that . . . because I’m not sure what “cat call” means and I sure hope it’s G rated, lol! However, your new pic showed up beside your last post under beside your regular name. 🙂

    2. Thats my ebay handle BW,The older I get the more “G” rated I find myself(roll eyes) but I can call our cats without using a can opener most of the time which is pretty neat considering the Independence and indifference of a cat.We are feeding 20 now with 14 that we call ours,the neighbors say it’s my entourage when I am out in the yard.

        1. Nothing special,our critters just love me,(of course all the wild game and crab meat I feed them helps)

  8. Well, I missed out on this contest, but that’s ok. I’ve got a sack full to shell that my granddaughter picked up. I also have some (shelled ) in the freezer.

  9. Two Satsuma and one Orange tree right off the deck in the back. Satsumas produce so many fruits they will actually split the tree on the one closest to the deck.

    John Folse has a really good Satsuma and Cane Syrup pecan pie recipe. Its definitely different.

    1. You can cook the satsuma juice down and use it in glazes for fowl and ham, and its really good in a home made salad dressing.

      Try that recipe some time, its a tangy different taste.

  10. Hi, I’m kind of a new reader. I stumbled on your site via the Outdoor Blogger Network.

    I always thought satsuma was just another name for mandarin, but it sounds like they’re different. I don’t think I’ve actually had a satsuma either, actually. They sound delicious.

    1. Some of the old bayou people call them “mandarines”, pronounced “man der eens” like tangerines; but they really are a totally different citrus. I really love the no-seed part AND the skins are edible.

      Welcome to the bayou, Jess. It’s always great to have a new reader take time to leave a comment. Visit daily because I think I’m about to launch a series of contests to start off the new year with a BANG! BW

    1. S. La. Feed Store. Call and ask them if they have any and ask when you can plant them. I bet you could plant now on any warmer day, meaning not freezing.

  11. Blu is seeing red. Red French Press that is.
    Matches the Mr Coffee almost perfect. Off to pick up some 8 O’clock or Millstone beans. I’ll send a photo essay when I perfect the art. Might have to buzz up Robb.