L’Apricot in brief ...
French production in 2012 160 900 tonnes
Production areas Rhone-Alpes, PACA and Languedoc-Roussillon
Availability : June to August
Peak season : July
Average price in 2012 2.5 € / kg
Consumption in 2012 3.8 kg per household purchaser Nutrition4: 100 g apricot represent 49.1 kcal
1 Source: Agreste
2 Source: Kantar Worldpanel
3 Sources: INSEE (a household consists of 2.3 persons), Kantar Worldpanel 4 Source: Ciqual 2012
The culture of apricot, that can reach 6 m high, requires patience and skill. Apart from specific geographical areas for the cultivation of each variety, production is virtually impossible. The Bergeron varieties and Orange in Provence are the most cultivated in France. They both have an elongated shape, but their color is different: while the Bergeron variety presents a uniform orange, the Orange Provence is dotted with red. As for the small round neck apricots them orange and mottled red, it comes to the variety Red Roussillon.
The proliferation of apricot is by grafting on plum and almond at the end of July, or apricot and peach late August.
In February comes to flowering, a delicate pass because the flowers do not support climate fluctuations that sometimes accompany the end of winter. The flowers are then fertilized by their own pollen or by that of a flower of the same tree to produce fruit: apricots is so self-fertile.
The summer maintenance of the tree (size and thinning) can promote the development of the fruit, which is harvested at maturity from mid-June.
- Find our advice section dedicated to the culture of’apricot
A little history
The apricot is originally from Armenia but China via the Silk Road, it arrives in Europe. Through the trees planted in Gardens of Versailles, France under Louis XIV takes a liking to apricot. The cultivation of this fruit will nevertheless develop until the following century.
Today, varieties grown in France are many and often attached to a region.
Our choice will be on ripe fruit on the tender flesh and sweet. Their orange color ensures maturity. Be careful though, some fruits may have a red button that is not necessarily a sign of a perfectly mature product. This color, called "blush" may appear before the time of harvest.
For nature consumption to bite, count 3 apricots per person. A good kilo of apricots allows a pie for 6-8 people or 1 liter sorbet.
Apricots should be eaten soon after purchase. They can be stored a few days in the refrigerator tray or in the open air.
In the first case, it is good to leave them at room temperature shortly before serving them to meet all their flavors.
Raw or cooked, apricot is about to taste and desires. Traditional pies or jams now give way to more daring preparations. The apricot is cooked both soups, sorbets, grout or blanks. It comes to infinity and is now the bold gamble to face the savory dishes. Fried, apricot accompanies perfectly white meat and poultry. It also partners with lamb and rice.
As many variations that make the apricot King of summer dishes and snack breaks. Nature, it easily eaten for a light and tasty snack.