Dates are a part of the palm family. The date palms are a native to the middle east and are consumed for their sweet and savory taste.
Just like grapes, Dates grow in the cluster which is often seen hanging on the tall date trees almost 50 feet higher than the ground. An average date is generally juicy and extremely sweet. They can be consumed raw and particularly fresh and even dehydrates dates taste as good.
How to choose the correct variety of dates to consume out of the choices given to us at any local super market: The best dates are the ones which are generally translucent and not completely dehydrated. Their flesh should have minimum tears or rips of any kind. The dates should not be clumpy and must have a luster to them.
Various Types of dates
Apart from these general qualities that we should check for before buying dates, we should also be aware of the various varieties in which it is available.
Understanding the characteristics of each variety makes it easier for us to select the one that matches our taste requirements and the one which fits our purpose the best. The various varieties of dates available are:
1) Ajwa Dates
Often called king dates, these dates are drier and softer in texture. These dates are also known to be Prophets preferred dates. They have innumerable benefits for our overall health. They leave a smoothness in our mouth which is irresistible.
2) Medjool Dates
The Ajwa dates are called the king of dates. The Medjool variety is called the Queen of dates. They are big n size and yet cushiony. They have a Mild sweet flavor and are often used in U.S.A for flavoring milkshakes and smoothies. They are suitable for patients with diabetes also.
These dates are extremely soft in the texture. Their taste is sweet that is what their name means too. The halawi dates are usually small in comparison to the other types of dates.
4) Kalmi Dates
This variety of dates is a native of Oman. These are usually black and are small and cylindrical. They help in prevention and cure of diarrhea.
5) Mabroom Dates
The chewiest variety of dates. The Mabroom dates are of premium quality. They are rich in both vitamins and minerals and have a sweet taste.
Like dates but enjoy crunch well, in that case, this is the right choice for you. These dates are yellowish and have a crunch in their taste. Their delicate and creamy flavor is just irresistible. They are often sold while still clinging on thin branches.
One of the finest qualities of dates from the holy land of Madinah. Due to their healing properties, these dates are relatively costlier than most other varieties.
If you want to have dry dates, then this is the correct pick for you. These are sweet and have a wrinkled skin. They’re not much expensive and stay fresh for long thus, this variety is most suited for export purpose.
Dates rich in fiber and less sweet when compared to other varieties. Zahidi dates usually are goldish brown in color and very firm in their texture. They have a unique nutty taste. They are known to help in blood circulation.
The dates are known for their innumerable health benefits and high nutrition value. It is often also said that these dates also possess healing qualities.
This variety is particularly popular in Algeria. The thoori dates are usually sold after stuffing them with nuts. Their skin varies from brown to red and is usually very wrinkled in texture.
These dates are large and thus are fleshy. Even though the size is large but the seed size is still small making this variety delectable in its very own special way. It is believed that these dates shave a high protein content.
These dates are generally black in colour or really dark brown in their appearance. Majorly cultivated in the holy land of Madinah these dates are sweet to taste. As their cultivation takes place in a sacred land they are said to possess healing properties. They are rich in their mineral content and are also helpful in preventing anaemia. They even provide help in case of intoxication.
14) Deglet Noor
As the name suggests noor or light, these dates appear goldish when raised and seen in the sun. They sweet to eat and are dry.
These dates are crisp and usually have a typical brown color to their body apart from the tips which are yellowish in the shade. They are not flaky even though wrinkles can be seen on their skin.
The perfect companion to the Arabic coffee. These dates usually have loose skin and flavor like that of caramel. These dates are usually sticky especially when they are fresh.
These dates vary in color in the shades of brown They are available in orange-brown to light brown shades of orange. Khadraw dates are usually best in texture and flavor when they are consumed fresh.
A famous variety from Oman. The fard dates are dark brown with a tender skin. They have a sweet flavor and small seed.
This date changes its color from Red to Brown and finally to Black. These dates are usually long in appearance and have a soft texture to them.
The Zaghloul dates are usually long and sweet. They have a crunch to them and are extremely popular in Egypt. Their skin color is often dark red.
After understanding the various varieties, we can pick the variety we will love the most as per its characteristic taste and flavor.
Health Benefits of Eating Dates
Dates are also known to have innumerable benefits for our health. Some of them are being listed below:
1) Since dates are known to contain the significant amount of minerals, which in turn maintain healthy bones thus, dates are known to prevent osteoporosis.
2) They have high fiber levels thus work as a laxative which helps in relieving constipation.
3) Again, their high fiber content helps in the intestinal functions improving the process of digestion.
4) Dates can help in curing and preventing anemia.
5) If dates are consumed with cucumber paste, they help in maintaining the apt weight for your body.
6) Dates also help in lowering cholesterol levels of our body.
The most beneficial fact being that dates our known to strengthen our nervous system which in turn manages our whole body. With its ample benefits and delectable taste dates are a must for each of us.