Concord Seedless Grapes
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Varying in color from deep blue to purple or almost black, the large round Seedless Concord grape grows in loose clusters on sturdy climbing vines. A powdery film, or bloom, develops on the skin’s surface which provides a natural waterproofing and also prevents cracking. The berries’ thick, tannin-rich skin offers a pleasant chewiness against the juicy and almost gelatinous inner pulp. The seedless flesh is almost translucent with a slight green tinge and is both tangy and rich. They are high in sugar and acidity but slightly smaller and sweeter than their seedy predecessor. The grape’s unique sweet musky flavor is sometimes described as “foxy”, alluding to the species’ alias, the fox grape.
Seedless Concord Grapes are available from late summer into early fall.
The Concord grape is a variety of Vitis labrusca that is named after the city of its origin, Concord, Massachusetts. It has been a part of American viticulture since 1843 and one of the oldest domestically cultivated grapes still grown today. The seedless variety is a cross between a Thompson seedless and a Concord developed at the University of California at Davis in 2003. These blue-skinned grapes are responsible for making the famous and popular Concord grape jelly and have become a major crop throughout the United States.
Concord grapes are and excellent source of vitamin C and the phytonutrient, Resveratrol, an important chemical in maintaining heart health.
The Seedless Concord grape is incredibly versatile and used for making preserves, juice, wine, liqueur and vinegar. When eaten raw out of hand, they make a perfect tart, but succulent-tasting snack. The intense grapey flavor makes an excellent tangy sorbet that pairs well with rich creamy desserts such as cheesecake or panna cotta and, of course, peanut butter. Other complimentary flavors include, almond, pistachio, hazelnut, walnut, peanut, lemon, strawberry, raspberry, endive, arugula, fennel, rosemary, mint, yogurt, sour cream, crème fraiche, goat cheese, blue cheese, pork, duck and poultry.
Grape juice was first made by Dr. Thomas Welch, a prohibitionist, making his famous grape juice as an alternative for communion wine.
Concord grapes originated in Concord, Massachusetts in 1849 when Ephraim Wales Bull first cultivated them. Bull wanted to create a hardy vine that could survive the cold climate of Massachusetts. He initially planted 22,000 seedlings and after 6 years chose one single vine that proved to yield the best fruit, and that original vine is still thriving today in Concord! The Thompson seedless was named after George Thompson in 1872 and one of three sprouts that survived a vineyard flood in Sutter County, CA. It was initially developed as a seedless raisin grape, but eventually became the parent of the Seedless Concord.
Recipes that include Concord Seedless Grapes. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Alana Jones-Mann||Concord Grape Hand Pies|
|The Herbangardener||Homemade Concord Grape Fruit LEather|
|Sweet Paul||Concord Grape and Pear Focaccia|
|Home In The Finger Lakes||Concord Grape Pie|
|Girl in the Little Red Kitchen||Concord Grape Tarte Tatin|
People have spotted Concord Seedless Grapes using the Specialty Produce app for iPhone and Android.
Produce Spotting allows you to share your produce discoveries with your neighbors and the world! Is your market carrying green dragon apples? Is a chef doing things with shaved fennel that are out of this world? Pinpoint your location annonymously through the Specialty Produce App and let others know about unique flavors that are around them.