Winter Tea Snack - Baked Salty Mandarin

Back in my hometown, mandarins ripen around late November to December.  We love the citrus aroma from mandarin peels. It gives off a vibrant and energetic scent. It is also wonderful to enjoy it as tea snack in the winter.

I loved to make baked mandarin in the winter time for my tea class. They are warm and are the best tea snacks for Yun Nan red tea and aged tea. The citrus aroma gets intensified after you bake them. I always like to place a few of them in the tea room before students or guests arrive. The room would be surrounded by this soothing and vibrant scent without overpowering the aroma from tea. It also gives a warm and calming feeling for someone who just come in from the cold outside. 

The baked mandarin is very easy to make. You can choose to bake it with or without salt. The salt intensifies the sweetness of the mandarin.  The salty version is also used in Chinese medicine as a remedy for cough. Here are the steps to bake mandarins.

No salt version:
1. Pick a small size mandarin, make sure it is SWEET. 
2. Wrap it with foil.  If you don’t, there might be burn marks which do not affect the taste.
3. Preheat the oven to 400F and bake the mandarin for about 15 minutes or more (up to 20 minutes) . 
4. Let it cool before tasting it. 

Salty version:
1. Pick a small size mandarin, make sure it is SWEET. 
2. Use a small knife to open a small hole at the top of the mandarin. Please see the picture below. 
3. Use a chop stick or something similar to enlarge the hole.  Sprinkle a little bit of salt into the hole.  (The salt will gradually melt and seep into the mandarin over the baking process.)
4. Put the lid back and wrap the mandarin with foil. If you don’t, there might be burn marks which do not affect the taste.
5. Preheat the oven to 400F and bake the mandarin for about 15 minutes or more (up to 20 minutes).
6.  Let it cool before tasting it. 

 Enjoy baking!!!! Please leave some comments if you like it. Would love to hear from you!!!

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