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Medium-sized, with thin orange skin, the Tarocco Sicilian Blood Oranges are considered “half-blood” because of the irregularity in coloring.
The Tarocco variety is the sweetest and most flavorful of the blood oranges. And it also has the highest content of Vitamin C of any orange variety in the world. This is primarily due to the fertile soil around Mount Etna in eastern Sicily, where these oranges originate.
Also called the “queen of oranges,” and the “red gold of Sicily,” this is the most popular orange in Italy.
This Italy citrus marvel is seedless and easy to peel, making it a perfect snack on its own.
Of course, there are various ways to use it. Try an Italian classic: the traditional Sicilian orange salad. It’s light, easy, and completely delicious. Arrange some orange slices on a plate, with some olives, onions, and parsley. Season with some salt and pepper. Drizzle with some olive oil, and serve.
You can even try your hand at dessert. Make a blood orange and prosecco jelly. Or a citrus tart using Tarocco blood oranges.
A popular story surrounding the origins of the name of the Tarocco Sicilian Blood Oranges is that “Tarocco!” was an expression of surprise a farmer yelled out when he was presented by the fruit.
So popular and loved is this citrus that every last week of February, when orange production is at its peak, the town of Palagonia celebrates the Blood Orange Festival. All through the town, you can sample various dishes made from this citrus, as well as all sorts of drink.
Blood Oranges require well-ventilated storage and cool temperatures away from direct sunlight. You can place them on the counter or table in a wire or wooden basket. Don’t use a sealed container, as this can hasten the spoiling process. At room temperature, they will last up to 3 days. If you decide to store your fruit in the fridge, place them in the crisper, with or without a mesh bag. They’ll keep for up to two weeks.