For thousands of years farmers, merchants, and kings have been enjoying the sweet and earthy taste of sun-ripened, sun-dried dates. Along with raisins, figs, apples, and apricots, dried dates have been featured regularly as snacks and garnishes in Mediterranean, North Africa, and Middle Eastern cuisines. Even today pitted dates are the second most popular dried fruit, just behind raisins.
These dates are Deglet Noor Dates, a variety known for its light amber color, sweet honeyed flavor, and roasted nut after taste. They have been grown in California since the 1900’s. Deglet Noor translates to “Dates of Light” because of their translucent appearance. They are also called “Queen of the Dates” in contrast to the Medjool dates which are larger and called “King of the Dates.” Deglet Noor dates have a satisfying chewy and slightly dry texture and are ideal economical and readily available dates for baking and snacking.
These gourmet food dates were grown and harvested in the United States, dried, and pitted for your enjoyment. Pop them right in your mouth for a sweet snack, or incorporate them into sweet or savory dishes. Used whole they can be stuffed with nuts; goat cheeses; and spices like cinnamon, rosemary, or ginger. They can also be diced and incorporated into rice dishes, salads, cakes, puddings, marinades, and hot cereals. Enjoy them with a hot cup of tea.
Dried dates in an airtight container can be stored for up to one year in a refrigerator, and five years in a freezer. Dates have many nutritional benefits, and are high in fiber and vitamins.
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