Here's a fruit that cannot be grown without warm sunshine, so we have to rely on Mediterranean countries for supplies.

Picked straight from the tree, an apricot can be delightful to eat raw, warm from the sun, but once they arrive here I feel they need light cooking to bring out the best apricot flavour. The season is short – June to August – but dried apricots are now available all year round and can nearly always be used in apricot recipes. When it comes to preparing apricots, there's no need to peel them – all you do is cut the apricot around the natural line into two halves, then, holding the half containing the stone in one hand, give a little twist and squeeze as you remove the stone with the other hand.

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