Another member of the rose family, closely related to peaches, apricots are smaller and have a pit which comes out easily when the fruit is halved.
Originally apricots came from China, and from there made their way to Persia and the Mediterranean. During The 18th century they were introduced to the California missions.
Apricots have a short fresh season, they are at their best when tree ripened, but tree ripened apricots are increasingly difficult to come by unless you have an orchard close by.
Their tanginess and taste only intensifies and improves when dried. Don't expect organic, non- sulfite dried apricots to be bright orange. They will taste the same but their color will be darker.
Fresh apricots can substitute peaches, but their not-too-sweet tanginess makes them ideal for sweet and sour sauces, specially over pork. Apricot flavor needs the right partner to come out and be "felt". My personal favorite is dried apricot sauce , barely sweetened, over thick manjarblanco.