Ripe and golden with a luscious flavor and velvety surface – or a more intense shade when dried – apricots are closely related to peaches, plums, and nectarines.
Already well-known in Greece in 60 BC, apricots were transported to Europe by Greeks who called them “golden eggs of the sun.” Today, apricots’ primary commercial operations are in the Mediterranean and Middle East, with off-season offerings from South America or New Zealand. In America, the first apricot tree was first shipped to Virginia in 1720, but orchards in the Spanish missions of California circa 1790 showed how such a climate can proliferate this fruit.
In fresh apricots, the highest level of vitamins is provided by vitamin A – 13% of the daily value in one fruit. This includes several beneficial carotenes, which release powerful antioxidants essential for maintaining your optimal vision, healthy skin and mucus membranes, and for protection against lung and mouth cancers. Apricots also are a good source of vitamin C.