Apricots are not sold by variety but by colour. They range from pale yellow to golden-orange in colour and some have a soft red blush. They have a soft, velvety skin and a sweet, juicy taste.
Ripeness is indicated by plump apricots that yield to pressure. There should be no green colour on them.
Ripen at room temperature. Ripe apricots can be stored in the fridge for 2–3 days.
Apricots can be eaten unpeeled – simply wash and eat raw. They are also delicious when cooked; try them baked, poached, grilled or stewed.
4 quick ways with apricots
Throw together a quick snack. Halve and stone apricots and fill with cottage cheese. Add a sprinkle of cinnamon or a drizzle of honey for extra sweetness.
Mix things up a little with a new kind of crumble. Replace chopped apples with the same amount of chopped apricots in your favourite apple crumble recipe and reap the health benefits of a different type of fruit. Yum!
Don’t limit apricots to fruit salads – try them in savoury salads, too. Combine shredded cooked chicken with apricot slices, mixed salad leaves, cucumbers and red onions. Dress with your choice of dressing.
Don’t bin any squashed or bruised apricots; stew them instead. Wash 2kg of apricots, remove the stones and cut them into pieces. Combine fruit with 1/2 cup each of sugar and water in a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes, or until fruit is soft but still intact. Use as a topping on top of museli or yoghurt, or on its own as a healthy snack!
Did you know? Apricots contain vitamin C and are an excellent source of vitamin A. Both these antioxidants are important for eye health.