April 29, 2015 • Category: Mezze/Appetizers, Dessert
Have you ever had loquats? The perfect Spring fruit in Lebanon, it is available at all the greengrocers and is hanging in many loquat trees around the capital. It is the most delightful fruit and is originally from China (don’t really know how it found its way to the Near East). I used to see lots of loquats in California as well, but nobody seemed to notice them. They are sold in the Middle-Eastern store in Dallas when in season and there are some loquat producers in California selling it online.
I would highly recommend you try one or two. Unfortunately it is hard to tell if that loquat will be tangy or sweet. Usually if the fruit is fleshy and the color a deep orange, chances are it will be very sweet. It is high in potassium and Vitamin A and pectin, and lots of other good things too. It is called akedenia in the region. I tried stewing it once, which made it taste like apricots.
13 Comments • Comments Feed
superbe photo! chez nous ça s’appelle zaarour ou mchimcha.Un fruit au goût très délicat! En plus de les manger fraîches, on en prépare un tajine sucré avec les nèfles farcies d’une pâte d’amande, un plat d’une grande délicatesse! c’est toujours merveilleux de venir chez toi! Bisous!
On April 29, 2015 at 7:05 pm
the loquat trees are native to a region in China- our climate here in north Florida is similar. As a result, this areas has many loquat trees planted in yards for edible landscapes.
On April 30, 2015 at 1:07 am
although we were taught a bit in school about the Silk Road, it was only recently that – for several reasons – additional knowledge from several sources came my way. What we were taught was that Marco Polo had pioneered the Silk Road route from venice to china in the 13th century, that prior to the italian’s voyage there’d been no connection between East and West.
i’m no historian so it’s presumptuous of me to even dare to write this. But what i learned recently is that the Silk Road had flourished for centuries, possibly even millennia, long before Marco Polo left venice. Apparently an important leg of the Silk Road turned south into africa.
it’s easy to imagine the romance of this early trading route, the lone travellers & the groups of traders, all accompanied by pack animals laden with spices, gold, animal skins, ivory, silks from china.
all this by way of saying that, in my imagination, loquat seeds were travelling the Silk Road from china to the middle east, many centuries ago.
On May 1, 2015 at 3:14 am
@humble_piey: Wonderful thoughts indeed! I wish you could have met this spice distributor in Beirut who was waxing for hours about the silk road and how spices were traded! I will try to locate him again and share his thoughts on the blog.
On May 1, 2015 at 8:01 am
Alicia (foodycat) says:
They grow really well in Australia too – loquat jam is a really old school but lovely preserve.
On May 2, 2015 at 11:28 am
Nuts about food says:
In Italy those are called ‘nespole’, they are very common. I don’t remember them much growing up, but every spring, markets and supermarkets sells them!
On May 4, 2015 at 9:05 am
🙂 Funny, in Czech it is MISPULE! 🙂 Not growing here, but available in supermarkets.
On May 22, 2015 at 1:55 pm
@Astheart: Thank you for the info! I have not seen it sold in supermarkets anywhere besides lebanon and Arab grocers in the US.
On May 25, 2015 at 6:26 am
Oui, Chef says:
My Lebanese father-in-law can go on about loquats for days he loves them so much….too funny. Hard to get them around here, I’ve only ever seen them in the Carolinas.
On May 9, 2015 at 1:08 pm
Ah, we have an old loquat tree in the hotel courtyard – un neflier – and sadly I missed the moment we needed to pick them because I wanted to make loquat jam. They are a very curious fruit and very few of our guests know what they are (yes, the Australians do!). Thanks for sharing this information!
On November 22, 2015 at 12:06 pm
@Jamie: I’d be curious to know how they taste. You may be too far up North. Here in Lebanon, the best ones (and the largest fields) are in the South in the area inland from Sidon, Lebanon’s coastal city. They get very sweet in the Spring, and are at their best for just 3 or 4 weeks.
On November 22, 2015 at 7:15 pm
what food we can made from loquat fruit?
On June 6, 2018 at 4:19 am
Bernard King says:
I am developing a giant loquat that lasts well on the shelf and doesnt bruise. So far I have one that is 85mm long. It will take a few years to see how things go.
On October 22, 2020 at 5:24 am