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Author Topic: Can I eat my bergamot orange?  (Read 846 times)

Daintree

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Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« on: March 06, 2016, 04:21:47 PM »
So, I have what was labelled as a bergamot orange tree.  I just harvested the first fruit.  Orange-sized and round with an orange skin. 
I cut it open and the flesh is very pale yellow.  I tasted the fruit, and it is not bitter.  It is somewhere between an orange and a lemon.

I have read that "too much" is "toxic".  How much is too much, and what problems does it cause?
How many can I eat before I get sick, or will I even get sick? It is pretty juicy and really tasty! I really want to eat it, or squeeze some juice into my tonic water!

Thanks!

Carolyn

Millet

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2016, 11:07:01 AM »
I don't think eating a bergamot orange will actually hurt you.  The amount can be equated with how many lemons you can eat. Make marmalade out of them. - Millet

shah8

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2016, 08:47:19 PM »
You're thinking of Seville oranges, not bergamot.

Tom

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2016, 10:45:54 PM »
I'm aware that anybody can make a mistake but I'm 99% sure Millet is not getting Seville confused with bergamot ! Tom

Daintree

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2016, 11:12:08 PM »
Ok, it's going in the tonic water right now!

Tom

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2016, 11:23:39 PM »
Seville or bergamot ? Maybe something else with the tonic water too ? I've heard calamondrin makes a great old fashioned.

shah8

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2016, 07:42:10 PM »
I wasn't replying to Millet but OP.

Seville oranges are the oranges that are bitter.

Bergamot oranges are a Seville Orange and lemon or citron cross, and have aromatic peels.  They'd just be sour, with some bitterness.  Also substantially less toxic.

Millet

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2016, 11:37:13 AM »
Bergamont oranges are less sour then a lemon but more bitter then a grapefruit. The first documentation of the Bergamot orange can be traced back as far as 1708. It has been a common orange cultivar in the Mediterranean, specifically Italy, where it was first discovered as a seedling. Italy produces more Bergamot oranges than anywhere else in the world. The fruit is specifically cultivated for its oily rind.  What I find very interesting is that the world's only commercial production is limited primarily only to Calabria (a region in Southern Italy, forming the "toe" of the Italian Peninsula) because this is the ONLY KNOWN growing region where fruits do not produce varied qualities of essential oils in their peels. It takes about 440-lbs of Bergamot oranges to get 1-quart of Bergamot oil. Currently in small quantity purchases the oil sells for about $400.00/gallon.

Millet
« Last Edit: March 10, 2016, 11:55:47 AM by Millet »

Pancrazio

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2016, 12:09:36 PM »
The fruit here is generally considered inedible but you have to take it with a pinch of salt; in the same place where you can grow bergamots, you can also grow premium oranges and lemons, so it isn't strange that such fruits hasn't reached its fame for its edibility.
I think that the toxicity problems are overstated, but apparently bergamots have chemicals increasing photosensitivity; so i wouldn't exaggerate with them, especially in summer or if i have to expose myself to much sun.
I think that zest can be used without much trouble. Here in Italy they are used to produce a liquor similar to limoncello, called bergamino but it's a liquor pretty rare to find. Best fruits for that use are the yellow-green fruits. There aren't many other uses for the fruits, if you don't take in account, of course, the oil extraction.
Last thing i want to add, is that bergamot is a generic name as "orange"; there are three differents cultivars of bergamot, that are seldomly nominated: they are Femminello, Castagnaro and Fantastico. First one has smaller fruit, but produces a lot of them; second one has bigger, bumpy fruits; last one has elongated fruits.
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Daintree

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Re: Can I eat my bergamot orange?
« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2016, 05:25:07 PM »
Hmmm.  Although mine is not a named variety that I know of, the fruit is similar to the Femminello.

 

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