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Lime-elo products debut lineup of baked goods

By Staff | May 18, 2011

Vicki DelBagno, owner of Vicki's Sweet Things in Fort Myers, displays some of the baked goods she is offering which incorporates Maxwell's Sanibel Lime-elo.

When longtime Sanibel resident Steve Maxwell discovered that two fruit trees in his back yard had somehow produced a naturally-germinated hybrid between a key lime and a Mineola tangelo honeybell, he knew that it was something special.

And now, nearly four years following the initial discovery of the plant — which he dubbed the “Lime-elo” — Maxwell’s natural wonder is bearing it’s own fruits with the debut of several baked goods which have incorporated the unique sweet, yet tart, citrus flavors.

Vicki DelBagno, chef and owner of Vicki’s Sweet Things Cakery & Creamery in Fort Myers, recently launched a lineup of cookies, cakes and barbecue sauce featuring Maxwell’s Sanibel Lime-elo.

According to DelBagno, Maxwell stopped in her shop one day and began talking about his 21st century fruit with some of her employees. After some more discussion, she and Maxwell decided to put their resources together in order to come up with some products featuring the newly-discovered citrus.

“It tastes a little bit tart, but still very sweet,” said DelBagno of the Lime-elo’s one-of-a-kind flavor. “I think it’s quite versatile. It’s not as tart as a lime or as sweet as an orange. To get this kind of flavor out of one fruit is really amazing.”

Vicki's Sweet Things now sells miniature bundt cakes, cookies and tarts flavored with Lime-elo juice.

DelBagno, a Johnson & Wales University graduate who interned with Norman Love Confections, already had a strong connection to the islands. She produces the “mermaid” series of cakes for Bailey’s General Store, which she also offers at her store, located at 15675 McGregor Blvd. (Island Plaza).

Currently, Vicki’s Sweet Things produces a Lime-elo cookie, tart and both miniature and full-sized bundt cake. In the near future, they hope to also offer Lime-elo muffins, sorbet and barbecue sauce, which DelBagno is already excited about.

“The barbecue sauce has a very nice flavor — you can use it as a marinade or a sauce,” added DelBagno, who noted that she has already received a lot of positive feedback from the baked goodies she has produced. “People have told me, ‘Wow! You can really taste both flavors!’ It’s an excellent product. Everybody who has tried it has really liked it.”

For more information about Vicki’s Sweet Things, call 239-462-8537.