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Page oranges are petite, about half the size of a Navel orange, and are said to have the finest flavor of any citrus available. The skin is a dark orange with occasional brown spotting; it’s medium-thin and easy to peel with minimal seeds. This hybrid citrus is juicy¬ with a rich, sweet taste. The Page is considered to have the best flavor of any variety.
Page oranges are available in the late autumn and early winter months.
A Page orange is a rare hybrid of a Clementine tangerine and a Tangelo (part Tangerine and part grapefruit or pomello); so it is ¾ Tangerine and ¼ grapefruit.
Page oranges make a great snack all on their own. The sweetness of this orange makes a wonderful juice or blended beverage. Add the juice to marinades or sauces for savory dishes. The naturally high sugar content in the Page oranges would make for a nice marmalade or addition to cakes or scones.
US Department of Agriculture scientists by the name of Gardner and Bellows created the Page orange in 1942 as a cross between a Clementine Tangerine and a Honeybell Tangelo. The purpose was to create an early season option for farmers. This hybrid tangerine-grapefruit was introduced to the market in 1963, but has stayed relatively rare due to a couple of factors. Its small size decreases the marketability of a Page orange, as more commercially sold fruit tend to be between two and 2 ½ inches in diameter. Another reason is their failure to produce under optimal conditions, creating an unreliable crop. The Page orange is grown by farmers throughout Florida and in the West African country of Cameroon.