I first heard about this large, nubbly, super-sweet citrus fruit on an episode of Good Food last February. Sadly, there were no Sumo citrus to be found at my grocery, and I've waited an entire year for them to come back into season and resume my search. Why? Apparently, these citrus have to be tasted to be believed.
Sumos are a marriage between a mandarin and a regular orange, a cross that's been in the works since the 70's in Japan (where it's marketed under the name Dekopon). Twist it by that top-knot and the thick skin peels away from the fruit easily. The seedless fruit inside is said to melt in your mouth.
David Karp, the pomologist interviewed for Good Food, says that the sugar level for this fruit is off the charts. He had to do a double-take when his refractometer measured a whopping 20 brix, which is apparently unheard of in fruit. But it's not just sweet: there's an acidity that balances out the sugar and makes the fruit all the more delectable.
Now doesn't that sound good? My fellow Kitchn writer Megan happened upon some last year and also gave them an enthusiastic review. I've got to get my hands on some of these fruits!
The Sumo Citrus website says that the next crop of citrus will be available early this year at Whole Foods nationally as well as specialty markets and Asian markets around California. Keep your eyes peeled.
Have you ever tried a Sumo citrus?
More Information on Sumo Citrus
• Sumo Citrus from Suntreat
• David Karp on Sumo Citrus from Good Food
• The Dekopon Arrives in California by David Karp in the LA Times
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(Image: Sumo Citrus)