Summer arrives and we all like to enjoy the fresh fruits that this season offers us:
Melons, watermelons, cherries, peaches, plums, apricots…
The apricot, a fruit with a long history
The apricot, easy to peel, small but tasty, sometimes with a touch of acid that makes it very refreshing, is one of the favorite fruits of Mallorcans. It forms part of main dishes and also of desserts, such as the apricot ensaimada, which you can find in many patisseries in Mallorca. The apricot coca from Son Carrió is another of the specialities used by this delicious fruit in its preparation.
The word apricot comes from the Hispano-Arabic “Albarqúq” and this, previously, from classical Arabic and Greek. It seems that the fruit originated in China, and that from there it spread to Central Asia, the Middle East, and that finally Greeks and Romans introduced it to Europe.
Mallorca also received this fantastic fruit, which here is called “Albercoc” (or aubercoc): Today, apricot is a star product of our gastronomy and especially in Porreres, a town in the center of the island, where the annual apricot festival is held.
The excellent properties of the apricot
Between May and August is the time when the apricots are picked and when you can enjoy their properties. Did you know that it has many vitamins (A, C and B3)? And what is rich in minerals such as Iron, Potassium, Calcium and Magnesium? In addition to all this, it has a lot of fiber, so overall it is a very good antioxidant and very beneficial for the heart, skin, bones, sight, hair and the immune system.
A little anecdote about the apricot
One of the most important cities in the Middle East is Damascus, and today it remains the capital of Syria. But what you probably didn’t know is that in some places like Andalusia, the Canary Islands or Argentina, apricots are called “Damascus”.
Apricot festival in Porreres
Every year in June, the “Fira de L’Albercoc”, (Albercoc Festival) is held in Porreres, with a multitude of activities and sales of products, all based on apricot: fresh dried fruits “al canyís”, ice cream, liqueurs, pastries…
But the funniest are the contests: The one to make apricot cocas, and the most exciting of all, the “Concurs de xapar albercocs”. In 30 minutes, cut as many apricots as possible in the traditional way. Curiously enough, an older woman from the village almost always wins, and that is because the “maña” is worth more than the energy of the youth. In matters of mastery, experience is very valuable. You dare to participate and try to beat the porrerrencs?
To find out in detail about the activities planned for the current year, consult the complete programme on the Porreres Town Hall website.
While we are on the subject of fiestas and festivals, I recommend the festivals held every year in Binissalem for the grape harvest: Binissalem – Grape harvest festival
Here’s a tasty video recipe for apricot coke: