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What Is a Date Palm?
Date palms are trees belonging to the Arecaceae genus that bears sweet, pitted fruits called dates. The date palm tree is native to parts of the Middle East like Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq. These trees thrive in warm climates, and today they are grown in the Canary Islands, Mexico, and in the US states of California, Florida, and Arizona. Date palms are unique because they are either male or female plants, and they will need to cross-pollinate in order to bear fruit.
6 Varieties of Dates
You can use the seeds from any variety of date to start a date palm tree. Here are five of the most common dates that you might see in the supermarket.
- Medjool: The Medjool date is the most commonly sold date in the US. They are large and juicy with a maple flavor that makes them great for cooking and baking.
- Deglet Noor: Deglet Noor dates are the second most commonly available date in the US. They have a subtler flavor than Medjools with a slightly nutty taste.
- Barhi: Sweet Bahri dates are typically enjoyed as snacks or desserts and are popularly grown in Southern California. They're very delicate which makes them difficult to cook with.
- Halawi: Halawi dates are small fruits that have a buttery caramel flavor.
- Mazafati: Mazafati are medium-sized dates with a sweet taste and a soft, fleshy texture.
- Kadrawi: Kadrawi dates have a syrupy taste and a gooey texture, making them a popular choice for baking.