***The apricot is a stone fruit with a seed nut within it.
Its shape is similar to that of the peach but slightly smaller, with skin that is velvety and golden orange in color.
*Apricot is not suitable for juicing but can be blended to be mixed with other juices.
The fresh fruit tastes smooth and sweet, with a flavor that is a cross between a peach and a plum.
An apricot in its raw state is somewhat acidic but the acidity decreases as it ripens and its sugar content increases.
When it ripens, the vitamin A within also doubles.
An apricot is a low-calorie package, too — only 17 calories in a 1.2-ounce piece of fruit. It’s high in fiber (like most fruit) and a great source of vitamins A and C, as well as beta-carotene, potassium and tryptophan.
Apricots contain a carotenoid called beta-cryptoxanthin that appears to be a strong antioxidant. Some experts believe it may help reduce the risk of certain cancers and arthritis.
Health Benefits of Apricot :
Apricot has high mineral content, that makes it beneficial in cases of anemia, tuberculosis,
- asthma, bronchitis and toxemia
- Apricot is high in vitamin A, that is why it is very helpful in the removal of skin pimples and other skin disorder.
- Apricot contain LYCOPENE l, this substance can help prevent cancer and help to protect LDL cholesterol from oxidation, which may help prevent heart disease.
- It helps destroy intestinal worms.
- It may help remove gallstones.
- It is it helps in preventing cancer in organs lined by epithelial tissue, due to its high vitamin A content.
*** Nutritive Values : Per 100 grams
Vitamin A : 2,790 I.U.
- Vitamin B : Thiamine .3 mg.;
- Vitamin C : 7 mg.
- Calcium : 16 mg.
- Phosphorus : 23 mg.
- Carbohydrates : 12.9 gm.
- Protein : 1.0 gm.
- Calories : 51
***Apricot and Strawberry Salad
When apricots are at their best, strawberries are, too — and they make a great, vitamin-rich pairing.
There’s also a moment in late spring when cherries and apricots are both in season and you can make a stone-fruit extravaganza by substituting cherries for the strawberries in this recipe.
1 pound apricots, stones removed, quartered or sliced
1 pint strawberries, hulled and quartered or, if very large, sliced
1 tablespoon agave nectar or rice syrup ( or what you prefer)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Chopped or slivered fresh mint leaves
1. Combine the fruit and syrup, and gently toss together.
Let sit for about 10 minutes, then toss with the orange and lemon juice.
Refrigerate if not serving right away, but take it out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes before you are going to serve it.
Toss with the mint shortly before serving.
Variation: Substitute cherries, halved and pitted, for the strawberries.
Yield: Serves four.
Advance preparation: You can prepare the fruit a few hours before serving and refrigerate.
*** APRICOT SMOOTHIE♥
An apricot smoothie should be pure apricot, with no other fruits to dilute the intense flavor.
This smoothie makes a great drinkable breakfast or mini-meal in the afternoon.
3 medium-size apricots (about 6 ounces), pitted
3/4 cup plain SOYA " yogurt "
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 teaspoon agave nectar or other syrup
1/8 teaspoon almond extract
1 or 2 ice cubes
1. Place all of the ingredients in a blender and blend at high speed until smooth.
***Serve right away.
Yield: One serving.
Advance preparation: Drink this right after you make it.
If you want to preserve apricots at their best for a few weeks, cook them down to a purée.
Use it as a fresh apricot jam, stirred into soya yogurt or spooned onto toast, or serve it over melon or sliced peaches.
2 1/2 pounds fresh, ripe apricots
3 tablespoons sugar, preferably organic, or rice syrup, agave nectar or other
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. When the water comes to a boil, drop in the apricots and boil for 20 seconds. Transfer to the ice water with a slotted spoon or a spider, and allow to cool for a few minutes.
Drain, slip off the skins, cut in half and remove the stones.
2. Place the apricots and sugar or syrup in a large, heavy saucepan, and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
Simmer 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until the apricots have broken down into a thick purée.
Remove from the heat, and allow to cool in the pan.
When cool, use a rubber spatula to scrape the purée into a jar or a container. Cover and refrigerate.
Yield: 2 cups.
Advance preparation: This will keep for two weeks in the refrigerator.