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Amazing Awesome Apricots!

When you think of apricots you imagine a juicy, soft fruit resembling a small peach.  Think
again! They’re also little power houses of some “notable nutrients!” 

 Apricot Advantages

  • Rich in Vitamin A (beta-carotene) and C. A boon for eye health, plus a boost for the body’s immune system.  Just 2-3 apricots can provide nearly 50% of your daily value of Vitamin A
  • Apricots provide Vitamin E, an antioxidant beneficial for skin health; may also help reduce the risk of certain cancers
  • A good source of iron, needed to provide oxygen to red blood cells; and potassium needed for multiple body functions.
  • Great source of dietary fiber to help reduce risks for developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and weight management (2 grams dietary fiber in 3 apricots)
  • Low in calories, about 50 calories in 3 apricots.  They’re fat-free and low carbohydrate (12 grams in 3 apricots)

 Serving Tips

  • Add to cakes, pies, with ice cream or sorbets, and yogurt
  • Use apricots as a jam or jelly; puree as a fruit topping for salads, cereal, pancakes, and other foods
  • Dried apricots are a healthy snack on the go

 Handling and Storage

  • Fresh, ripe apricots keep1-3 days at room temperature
  • Refrigerated apricots keep  4-5 days
  • Frozen apricots keep up to 3 months
  • Dried apricots, sealed, can be stored for 1 month at room temperature; 6 months refrigerated

 Preparation

  • To freeze: Slice in half; remove pits.  Dip in ascorbic acid solution (citric acid or lemon juice 10 minutes), to prevent color change. Drain, rinse; place in zip-lock freezer bags; freeze.  When ready to use, thaw in refrigerator. 
  • To dry: Slice in half, remove pits. Dip in ascorbic acid solution 10 minutes. Arrange pit side up on trays in single layers.  Dry until soft, pliable, and leathery; no moist area in center when cut.  Drying time in dehydrators-- between18-24 hours; oven drying--between 24-36 hours.

 
Try These Amazing Apricot Recipes!

Apricot Jam

Ingredients:

   ½ cup dried apricots, finely chopped

   2 tablespoons water

   1 teaspoon fructose

 Directions:

  1. Put apricots, water and fructose into small saucepan; bring to boil.
  2. Boil rapidly for a few minutes, make sure not to let it boil dry.
  3. Remove from heat; cool; store in refrigerator. Use within 1 month.

Makes 6 servings (2 tbsp)

Adapted from Allrecipes.com

Nutrition Information:

Per serving: 10 calories, 0 grams protein, 2.5 grams carbohydrates, 0 fat


Apricot Nut Bread

Applesauce, instead of oil, gives this bread its moist texture, without extra calories from fat.

Ingredients:


    1 (15 ounce) can apricot halves

    1/3 cup applesauce

    1/2 cup white sugar

    2 eggs

    1 cup all-purpose flour

    3/ 4 cup whole wheat flour

    1 teaspoon baking powder

    1/2 teaspoon baking soda

    1/2 cup chopped walnuts

 

Directions:

  1. Drain apricots; save syrup.  Puree in food processor, adding syrup if necessary to make 1 cup.
  2. Whisk together flours, baking powder and soda.
  3. In large bowl, blend applesauce and sugar. Add eggs one at a time; beat well.  Add flour mixture alternately with apricot puree; stir in nuts.  Spread batter into 9x5 loaf pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray and lightly floured.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees 50 minutes.  Remove from pan; cool on rack.

Makes 12 servings

Adapted from Allrecipes.com

Nutrition Information:

Per serving : 171 calories, 4 grams protein, 30 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams fat, 0 saturated fat

Posted on Thursday, May 17, 2012 at 9:56 AM
  • Author: Kristen Culver

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