Inventory, 18 lbs : 0
This item was last sold on : 09/10/23
Pluots are small to medium stone fruits, averaging 2 to 7 centimeters in diameter, and have a round to ovate shape with curved, slightly flattened shoulders. The fruit’s skin is thin, taut, glossy, smooth, and delicate, bruising easily and sometimes covered in a light film, depending on the cultivar. There are many different varieties of Pluots that range in appearance from solid hues to mottled, multi-colored shades of red, gold, amber, purple, green, to dark purple-red, almost black. Underneath the surface, the flesh is semi-aqueous, plump, and fine-grained with a firm but tender, succulent consistency. The flesh also varies in color from pink, red, white, yellow, to orange and contains a semi-freestone, tan pit. Pluots emit a honeyed aroma and have a sweet and tangy, candy-like flavor with floral and fruity nuances. The fruits generally contain a higher sugar content than plums and apricots and low acidity, contributing to their intense sweetness.
Pluots are available in the late spring through fall.
Pluots, botanically a part of the Prunus genus, are hybrid stone fruits belonging to the Rosaceae family. The name Pluot is a descriptor derived from the words plum and apricot and was given to a stone fruit developed by Floyd Zaiger of Zaiger Genetics in the late 20th century. Zaiger developed the original Pluot through natural, hand pollination, and the fruits are not genetically modified, considered an interspecific variety displaying more plum characteristics than apricot. In commercial markets, it is often advertised that Pluots are 75% plum and 25% apricot, but many of the Pluot varieties available today contain varying percentages and appearances based on their parent crossings. Pluots were created from multiple years of complicated crossings, and since their release to commercial markets, the hybrid fruits have continued to increase in popularity.
Pluots are a good source of vitamin A to maintain healthy organ functioning, vitamin C to strengthen the immune system, and potassium to balance fluid levels within the body. The hybrid fruits also provide calcium to protect bones and teeth, dietary fiber to regulate the digestive tract, and the darker pigmented varieties contain antioxidants with anti-inflammatory properties to protect the cells against free radical damage.
Pluots have a sweet, floral, and subtly tangy flavor well suited for fresh and cooked preparations. The fruits can be consumed straight, out of hand, or they can be sliced and tossed into green or fruit salads, mixed into grain bowls, stirred into yogurt or cereal, or served on appetizer plates with nuts, cheeses, and other fruits. Pluots can also be cut and dipped into chocolate as a healthy treat, used as a topping over pancakes, waffles, and ice cream, blended into smoothies, or pureed and frozen into popsicles and sorbet. Pluots complement flavors found in savory or sweet preparations, and the fruits can be cooked into sauces such as variations of classic barbeque and chimichurri. The fruits can also be chopped into salsa, simmered into jams, compotes, and chutney, grilled and topped over roasted meats, or baked on flatbreads. In addition to savory preparations, Pluots are popularly used to flavor cakes, tarts, pies, cobblers, and crisps. Slices of the fruit can also be dropped into sparkling beverages as a festive, fruity drink. Pluots pair well with cheeses such as feta, mozzarella, goat, cheddar, and ricotta, fruits including mangoes, apples, blueberries, melons, and other stone fruits, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, herbs such as basil, mint, cilantro, and thyme, shellfish, and meats including poultry, pork, and beef. Whole, unwashed Pluots should be stored at room temperature until ripe. The fruits can be kept in a paper bag or placed upside down to ripen, and once mature, the fruits should be immediately consumed for the best quality and flavor. Ripe Pluots can also be stored in the refrigerator for 3 to 7 days.
In the United States, the world of interspecific hybrids has caused confusion among consumers as the fruits are often marketed under many different names and descriptors. Pluots, plumcots, and apriums are all plum-apricot hybrids, but each type displays varying degrees of characteristics from its parent varieties, revealed in the fruit’s flavor, texture, and appearance. Zaiger Genetics has released over twenty varieties of Pluots, and the term Pluot was also protected by the company, forcing other farms to name their fruits with commercial marketing names. In the modern-day, Pluots are mostly known under proprietary names, including Dinosaur Egg, Dapple Dandy, Flavor Heart, Emerald Drop, Flavor Supreme, Flavor King, Geo Pride, and Flavor Grenade.
Pluots were developed in Modesto, California, through geneticist Floyd Zaiger of Zaiger Genetics in the late 20th century. Zaiger used Luther Burbank’s plumcot as one of the parent varieties to create a more favorable plum-apricot hybrid, and the fruits were produced from grafting plumcot trees onto plum tree rootstock. Burbank first released plumcots, which are 50% apricot and 50% plum, in the late 19th century, but the fruits developed an unfavorable reputation among growers for their difficultly in cultivation, variable fruit production, and unreliable flavor. Zaiger took Burbank’s plumcots and attempted to establish variations with improved flavor and growth characteristics, but eventually, he used the plumcots in a series of complicated crosses to create Pluots. Zaiger coined the term Pluot to create a memorable variety distinct from plumcots, and the hybrid fruits represent a modern, plum-apricot interspecific variety, trademarked in the 1990s. Today there are many different Pluot cultivars varying in appearance and flavor. The hybrid fruits are primarily grown in California and Washington, shipped to fresh markets across the United States. When in season, Pluots are found through farmer's markets, specialty distributors, and select grocers.
Recipes that include Pluots. One is easiest, three is harder.