Fresh apricots have too short a season for such a yummy fruit. That is why dried apricots have always been a popular treat. Drying is an easy way to preserve the taste and be able to enjoy them all year round. To be honest I have never been a real fan of the regular Turkish apricots available in most supermarkets, I find them somewhat bland, with sweetness but no real apricot flavor. Over the years, I prefer the more flavorful and tart variety of dried apricots I find at Trader Joe’s.
A few months ago, Enduring Sun contacted me about their imported sun dried apricots that I had to try. They sent me a sampler box so that I could see and taste the difference between their four heirloom varieties of sun dried apricots. Enduring Sun imports their apricots from Central Asia and they are certified by KLBD (London Beis Din). Part of their mission is to provide rural communities around the world an opportunity to work and reap the true rewards from their labor. These apricots not only taste great, but also support fair trade and improving the lives of village communities.
The four varieties of apricots are: Jelena, Valentina, Natasha and Larissa and they all have unique visual and taste characteristics.
Just by looking at the package you can see how different they look.
Jelena is the largest and it is very plump and chewy, it has almost a honey like after taste, it really tasted like candy to me.
Natasha was smaller and thinner and lighter with a bit of tang and a touch of tartness.
Valentina was a little chewier, but not as sweet as Jelena – it had a very strong natural apricot flavor.
Larissa was the smallest of all and tasted more like traditional dried apricots, with a lot more flavor.
I plan to eat most of these out of the bag, but will save a few to make these Apricot Canapes and this Artichoke Bottom, Apricot and Sun-Dried Tomato Salad that my family loves!
Find out more about Enduring Sun Apricots and how to get some of your own.