The luscious season of summer fruits in Armenia begins with June, the month of apricots. Every year, the country bursts with trees loaded with the world’s biggest, juiciest, and most flavorful apricots.
Apricots are the fruit of Armenia. Even its scientific name, Prunus Armeniaca, or Armenian prunes, honors that fact. Recently, apricot cores excavated from the ancient Armenian village of Garni support the theory that Armenians have been cultivating apricots for over 3,000 years.
While in season, every single Armenian table is loaded with plates of golden fruit. Yet, Armenians simply cannot spend the rest of the year without consuming apricots processed into other food and drinks. Here’s how we make sure to eat apricots all around the year.
Apricot Marmalade and Jam
No Armenian tea table is complete without golden apricot marmalade and jam. All through the apricot season, Armenian housewives diligently peel and cook the best apricots and let them simmer for hours. The result, mouth-watering apricot marmalades in rich syrup, is worth the effort.
Sun-dried, pitted apricots are a favorite among locals and tourists alike. As soon as the apricot season is over, marketplaces are packed with these sweet and flavorful treats to be consumed until the next season. Gourmands can enjoy it with a twist: filled with walnuts and dipped in dark chocolate!
Apricot Leather Wraps
Another favorite treat is the apricot leather wraps. While taking walks around city districts or in villages, you may notice trays of pulpy apricot juice left to sun-dry on balconies. This sweet and sour traditional dessert is best enjoyed with walnuts and tea.
If you have a taste for non-conventional homemade alcoholic beverages, then Armenia is the place for you. Homemade apricot vodka is a favorite traditional liquor that locals make in their backyards. Make sure you’ve had a bite before toasting with this strong yet flavorful drink.