The date is a highly sweet oval fruit from Mesopotamia. They can be anywhere from bright red to bright yellow, and contain a large stone in their whitish flesh. When dried, they take on wrinkly, dark red or brown appearance of dried peppers or giant raisins. Their caramel taste is between that of a fig or dry prune.
Wrinkled is fine. Their skin shouldn’t be too hard, though. Choose plump and glossy dates. Even when dried they still have moisture, so refrigerate unless you’ll use them very soon.
Pit dates before cooking or eating. You can bake dates into breads and cakes, put them in your oatmeal, or cover them in chocolate. Feeling adventurous? Stuff them with goat cheese!
Egypt - 20.0%
Iran (Islamic Republic Of) - 12.6%
Saudi Arabia - 11.4%