Black Velvet™ Apricots
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Black Velvet™ apricots are small to medium fruits, averaging 2 to 7 centimeters in diameter, and are slightly larger than common apricot varieties. The fruits have an oval, round, to ovate shape, encased in a semi-tough, purple-black skin. The surface is also covered in a light fuzz, creating a smooth and velvety texture. Underneath the skin, the golden yellow-orange flesh is aqueous, firm, tender, and dense with a soft consistency, enveloping a central brown pit that clings tightly to the flesh. Black Velvet™ apricots contain a honey-sweet flavor balanced with subtle tart and tangy nuances.
Black Velvet™ apricots are available for a short season in the early summer.
Black Velvet™ apricots are a modern hybrid variety belonging to the Rosaceae family. The name, Black Velvet™, is a marketing trade name to attract consumers, and the fruit was created from a cross between a plum and an apricot. Black Velvet™ apricots were selected for their sweet flavoring, juicy nature, and vivid color contrast between the dark purple skin and golden flesh. The variety exhibits many traits from its apricot parentage and is a favored boutique citrus throughout the United States. Despite their popularity, Black Velvet™ apricots are only available for 2 to 3 weeks in the early summer and are sought after by apricot enthusiasts as a fresh eating cultivar.
Black Velvet™ apricots are a good source of vitamin A to maintain healthy organ functioning and vitamin C to strengthen the immune system while reducing inflammation. The fruits also provide fiber to regulate the digestive tract and contain lower amounts of iron and calcium.
Black Velvet™ apricots have a sweet, subtly tart flavor well suited for fresh preparations. The fruits are primarily consumed straight, out of hand, and both the skin and flesh are edible, discarding the central pit. Black Velvet™ apricots can be sliced and tossed into salads, mixed into fruit bowls, served with strong cheeses as appetizers, or stirred into cereal, yogurt, and other breakfast bowls. The fruits can also be sliced and layered into tarts, baked into pies, cakes, cobblers, crisps, and bread, or simmered into jams, sauces, and syrups. Black Velvet™ apricots pair well with cheeses such as goat, blue, ricotta, and chevre, herbs such as fennel, basil, and mint, nuts, including pepitas, almonds, and walnuts, vanilla, tropical fruits, and beets. Whole, unwashed Black Velvet™ apricots will keep for 2 to 7 days when stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator's crisper drawer.
Black Velvet™ apricots are a part of a larger grouping of fruits known as the Velvet™ Series, a specialty line created by Kingsburg Orchards in California. The Velvet™ Series consists of inter-specific apricots, also known as IS apricots, which are apricots that have been pollinated by plums. Kingsburg Orchards began developing their Velvet™ Series line to extend the apricot season through the summer, offering fresh, juicy choices when other common apricot varieties are no longer available. The specialty apricots are also sometimes known as apriums, a term used to describe hybrid crosses between apricots and plums. Typically, apriums exhibit approximately 75% apricot characteristics and 25% plum characteristics. Black Velvet™ apricots were the first type to be developed within the Velvet™ Series line and were selected for their vibrant color contrast and sweet flavor. Black Velvet™ apricots received favorable reviews from consumers once they were officially released, but they were only available for 2 to 3 weeks. To extend the season, Kingsburg Orchards expanded their line to include other types of velvet fruits, each with a unique flavor, appearance, and ripening time. The other Velvet™ Series fruits include Red Velvet, Blue Velvet, Crimson Velvet, Gold Velvet, and Ruby Velvet. Black Velvet™ apricots are the second to last type of velvet apricot to arrive in the season and are available for a few weeks at the beginning of June.
Black Velvet™ apricots are a 21st-century proprietary variety developed by Kingsburg Orchards, a grower and distributor in the San Joaquin Valley of Central California. It is one of several varieties that are identified within the series of Velvet™ apricots and are an inter-specific apricot, a hybrid between an apricot and a plum. Today Black Velvet™ apricots are only available for a few weeks in the early summer and are cultivated in California for sale at farmer’s markets, specialty grocers, and supermarkets throughout the United States.
Recipes that include Black Velvet™ Apricots. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Love, Cake||BLACK VELVET APRICOT ALMOND CAKE|