Review and challenge: Trying palm dates and starting #trysomethingnew
Coins will be awarded for the most sincere reaction, captured on camera.
A little bit of history
Persian date palms have existed since ancient times and were cultivated by the people of Persia (present day Iran) around 4000 BCE. Considered sacred at the time - the palm tree was also interpreted as a symbol of friendship, peace, and prosperity within the Persian culture.
Those values have stood the test of times and nowadays date palms have been treated more or less like a person, because of their symbolical lifecycle - once the tree's head is cut-off, the palm will no longer grow, the trunk will become unstable and eventually die, just like a human being. Present day Iranians will count palms by the counting unit “Person” and this is something normal there, part of the Persian culture inherited with the lands.
Date palms love the hot desert climate and are widely distributed in the south provinces of Iran, making the country the second biggest dates producer (Egypt claims bragging rights here). Palms can grow up to 23 meters tall and the art of picking the dates hasn't changed much since Persian times.
But wait! Who do we know from dates palm country? Hmm... Shoutout to our dear Zahra Shafiei, who gets to fact-check me on the history. Check out her feed here and her Youtube channel - The Persian Version for some properly delicious Persian recipes!
Review - the sweetest thing you'll ever eat
My dates came all the way from the Fars province in Iran and unfortunately had to be dried, to have a fighting chance in reaching the store. No nuts within them, so Dates Cake is out of the question for now.
For a fairly small and dried fruit, the nutrition values are off the charts! Taking into account that only 20% of the content is not sugars, the amount of potassium is, gram for gram equal to a banana! And for a desert palm, the mineral content is surprisingly rich in diversity, but balanced in quantity. So far - so good.
Juicy for a dried fruit is not something that you can say often (or at all), but those dates didn't make me to reach for some water. Trying one was by far the weirdest taste experience with a fruit in my life. In the beginning, there's literally nothing. Towards the middle of the chewing, you can taste the tree origin of the fruit and that's very unique. When you're just about to swallow, the sugar hits you, along with the actual fruity taste.
Picking up my date for the night 😂
And hits you - it does! You think honey is sweet? Try a Persian palm date and think again! It's not aggressive sweetness, on the contrary - it's quite smooth, but it comes rapidly, out of seemingly nowhere. Like a pleasant surprise for your birthday (don't start, mine was in August), like a win from the lottery with just a single ticket. And you can have that once or twice in succession, but no more. Which makes those dates a very economical sweet treat, since the pack contains around 50.
I promise you - Persian palm dates are the sweetest thing you'll ever gonna eat in your life. No matter how much sugar you put in a cake, this is a very different kind of sweetness. Unfortunately being dried means there's no aftertaste to speak of, but I'm looking forward to try fresh palm dates someday.
Persian palm dates