Friday, December 30, 2016

Exotic/Disgusting Foods and Beverages Forum--Mandarinquats, and a Brief Discussion About "The Exorcist 3"

    This is another hybrid fruit, as one can easily tell from the name.  It's a cross between a mandarin (which is not an orange, but a citrus fruit more like a tangerine) and a kumquat (see December 24, 2012 post for more info on this).  Also, for more detailed information about hybrids, including comical animal hybrid names, see my March 30, 2013 post.  Mandarins, scientists have discovered, are one of the "Original Four" citrus fruits, along with the pumello (see February 20, 2014 post), citron, and papeda.  All other citrus fruits are hybridized children of these.
     Essentially, the mandarinquat looks like a giant kumquat.  Kumquats are usually about the size of a large olive, while their hybrid is about 2 inches (about 5 cm.) in diameter.  This hybrid fruit's shape is roundish or oval-ish, sometimes with a "nose" at one end.  Their outer rind is orange when ripe, along with many tiny brown spots.  The inner pulp is orange as well.  Like kumquats, this fruit is unusual in that the outer rind is edible, and even palatable.  Since it is a hybrid, the fruit's history is well known.  It was developed in Indio, California, near the UCLA campus, in 1970.  So mandarinquats are nearly the same age as me.
     Like many of the foods I've discussed, and especially the fruits, there are many health benefit claims about mandarinquats.  They are touted as being effective reducers of appetite and cholesterol, and also good at calming anxiety, aiding sleep, boosting metabolism, and fighting bronchitis.  But, as I'm always forced to say, readers should know that these claims are as yet unsubstantiated by medical science.  They are certainly healthy regardless, as they have high amounts of Vitamin C and fiber, and have very little fat, etc.
     Mandarinquats are commonly made into marmalades, syrups, and preserves.  But, given my disdain for cooking and food preparation, I of course chose to eat them plain.  I found them to be slightly more tart than kumquats.  As with kumquats, the outer rind is a bit sweet and mild, and cuts the sour taste of the pulp nicely.  Overall, they were decent.  My father tried some, too, and liked them more than me.  They were somewhat pricey, running me $5.99 for 5 individual fruits.  My batch was made by Frieda's, out of Los Alamitos, California.  Evidently their availability is limited, mostly from late December through March, or basically winter in the Northern Hemisphere.  So if you're interested in trying some, the clock is ticking.
     Finally, I think the developers of this fruit were savvy in going with "mandarinquats" rather than "kumdarins."
     Switching topics, I received the new (October 2016) edition of the movie "The Exorcist 3" (1990) on Blue Ray for Christmas.  Among many special features, it's the original theatrical release version and a new Director's Cut version.  (SPOILERS AHEAD)  The new version has scenes spliced into it from old, noticeably inferior sources, Nevertheless, I thought it was an improvement.  Like many viewers, I found the final exorcism scenes at the end of the film to be hokey and overly melodramatic.  Plus, they seemed tacked on.  (Which they were--director William Peter Blatty didn't want them, but was forced by the studio to do reshoots and add them.  The studio thought a movie with this title needed an exorcism.)  Although the director's cut does have a flaw.  I liked the theatrical cut's use of Jason Miller (Father Karras in the original, and this one) combined with Brad Dourif as the mysterious psych ward patient, depending on which of the two personalities was dominant at the moment,  It's only Dourif in the Director's cut, alas.  Also, both version have an amusing barrage of celebrity cameos in them, mostly of non-actors.  Samuel L. Jackson, Larry King, former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, Fabio, and former Georgetown University basketball greats John Thompson and Patrick Ewing (Ewing plays the Angel of Death!)


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