Apricots are the perfect kid-sized summer snack. Unlike peaches, plums, and nectarines, they're not as soft when ripe. This makes them better suited for packing on summer adventures.
Buy: Choose richly colored, golden-orange fruit. Yellow or greenish apricots will not be as flavorful. Apricots are still fairly firm when ripe, so avoid fruits that feel at all mushy.
Store: It's best to store apricots at room temperature. As you would with other stone fruits, add them to a paper bag to accelerate ripening and refrigerate to slow ripening. Remove pits before freezing.
Prepare: Rinse with cold water before eating out of hand or cutting up to add to a recipe. Apricots have a smooth, oval pit that falls out easily when the fruit is cut in half along the seam. Just twist the fruit like an Oreo cookie to separate the halves and remove the pit with your fingers. Enjoy apricots as a bright addition to salads and sandwiches. If you can't find fresh, dried apricots are a good alternative, although they often have added sugar.