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If it grows together it goes together.

It’s a saying I heard on the MasterChef Junior television show. I love those little kids and how creative they are.

Auburn, CA has its own little creative cook. His name is Mason Partak. Twelve-year-old Mason has a business, Mason Made and he will be appearing on Chopped Jr December 15, 2015.

Mason and many other entrepreneurs were at the 22nd annual Mountain Mandarin Orange Festival at the Auburn, CA fairgrounds. Evan and I saw everything from mandarins, Wood Fire Mandarin Pizza, Mandarin cocktails, mandarin candy, mandarin trees, jams, syrups, dressings and lots and lots of peels from eaten mandarins.

The sunny autumnal Saturday brought a diverse crowd of people. The festival is only three days, ending the Sunday before Thanksgiving. Nothing like a bowlful of mandarin oranges, or persimmon mandarin butter to share at Thanksgiving.

Mason Made was selling his new sauces. If you didn’t get a jar of his sauce you can still order it, or watch him on Chopped Junior on December 15, 2105. Mason was kind enough to give us his recipe for Mason Made Mandarin Chicken Salad.

1 head of iceberg lettuce – sliced Half a bag of coleslaw mix
1 bunch of cilantro – chopped
1 bunch of green onions – chopped 1 red bell pepper – chopped
2C lightly steamed and cold broccoli florets – chopped 8 oz of cooked chicken – chopped.
I make mine by sautéing 2 chicken breasts in 1 part *Mason Made Ginger Citrus and 1/2 part *Mason Made Aisian Fusion Goodness and chilling. I like the chicken cold on my salad.
1 pkg ramen noodles, no seasoning pkt, crushed Fresh Mandarins, sectioned and chopped
1/2 C sunflower seeds or sliced almonds
1/4C sesame seeds

Use your favorite oriental or peanut dressing, or here’s mine:
1/2C rice vinegar
1/4C soy sauce
4 tsp. fresh ginger (or 2 t. ginger powder)
5 tsp. sesame oil
4 clove garlic, peeled – we like it roasted
3 T. honey
1 C. olive oil
Blend all ingredients in a blender and chill before serving.

1. Make the dressing and chill.
2. In a big salad bowl, combine all the salad ingredients and toss to mix well.
3. Top with the desired amount of dressing, sprinkle with nuts and sesame seeds
4. Enjoy!