Thursday 5 October 2017

Mandariiiins for Halloween ! #ChileanEasyPeelers Challenge

We had a bit of a giggle walking round the shops at the weekend because in one of the big discount stores, they had a Halloween display on aisle one, Christmas decorations on aisle two and at the back end of the shop, a display featuring Playmobil "Easter eggs" (made of plastic, not chocolate, admittedly, but even so !). The world's gone mad and we often hear people saying that there are no seasons any more, even when it comes to buying fruit. If you want to buy strawberries in December, you can - they probably won't taste of anything, but they'll be on the supermarket shelves all the same. I like to buy our fresh fruit and vegetables at a local farmers' market (which is extremely convenient as it's just at the bottom of our road every Sunday morning) so I love seeing the different products coming into season - at the moment, there are lots of corn of the cob, pumpkins, marrows, cabbages and cauliflowers. In terms of fruit, there seem to be mainly apples and pears at the moment, which don't look hugely exciting in the fruit bowl, so the Madhouse kids were delighted to receive a delivery of Chilean easy peeler mandarins which were perfect for adding a splash of vibrant autumnal orange. They're in season now so they're on the supermarket shelves between September and November.

As we're gearing up for Halloween, and the kids had been trying to convince me to buy a huge 20kg pumpkin the last time we went to the market (certainly a bargain for £6 but I'd never have managed to carry it home !), we decided to give our easy peeler mandarins a spooky Jack o' lantern makeover ! I think these would go down a storm with the kids out trick or treating, mixed in with a few sweeties for good measure.

They are also perfect for lunchboxes (with or without the spooky faces !). Many schools have cracked down on the contents of your kids' lunchboxes in recent years, banning biscuits, chocolate bars and sugary drinks. Chilean easy peeler mandarins are the perfect school-approved sweet treat - they taste great so kids treat them as a "naughty but nice" dessert, they are easier to get into than other citrus fruits so even young children can manage to peel them all by themselves and they're seedless, so you won't get any complaints (or bits of spat-out chewed up fruit to deal with in the lunchbox at hometime !). I often see parents complaining on Mumsnet that their child won't drink plain water and has to go without drinks all day long at school - it's good to know that easy peeler mandarins are about 87 per cent water so, while it would be better to sit down and actually have a drink, they could be a great solution for fussy eaters (and drinkers).

Now that we're all back to work and school, anything that can save a few minutes in the morning (or at bedtime if I'm organising packed lunches for the next day) is a godsend, and I love the fact that I can fling a couple of mandarins in the lunchbox without having to worry about peeling and chopping or trying to save things like apples and bananas from going brown. I've also discovered that popping a couple of mandarins in Pierre's coat pockets are the perfect snack for when we're out and about, and they usually stave off demands for drinks too, saving me from lugging around bottles of water when we're out geocaching or wandering about having adventures or climbing trees. Pierre is extra chuffed to see that they perfectly match the colour of his zip and the lining of his coat !

Disclosure : This post is an entry for the BritMums #ChileanEasyPeelers Challenge, sponsored by Citrus Fruits from Chile


  1. I love the idea of popping a couple of mandarins in the children's coat pockets. They are a great all round fruit being delicious, easy to peel and affordable.

  2. Great to hear how you got on - commenting for myself and on behalf of BritMums and thanking you for taking part

  3. I love the mandarine idea as that's easier job to involve kids than pumpkin carving

  4. I love mandarins and think the Halloween makeover looks like a great idea.


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