Shalabi Dates: Appearance, Price, Benefits & Culinary Uses

Shalabi Dates: Appearance, Price, Benefits & Culinary Uses

Shalabi dates, also known as Shalaby dates, have become a global favourite. Their extraordinary flavour and texture make them a popular addition to sweet and savoury meals alike.

They have a more nuanced flavour profile and are somewhat sweeter than other varieties of dates. These dates are dry and chewy. The natural sweetness of these dates enhances their taste.

Let’s get into the world of Shalabi dates, exploring their history, nutritional benefits, and various culinary uses.

Origin, Geographical Presence and Seasonal Availability

Shalabi dates are said to have originated in the Saudi Arabian city of Medina. The name “Shalaby” has its origins in Arabian. They are named after the Arabic term for “handsome” or “dandy,” “shalab,”

The Shalabi khajoor is thought to have descended from a date palm tree that the Prophet Muhammad planted in Medina. There’s also the possibility that date farmers in Medina spent hundreds of years perfecting the recipe for Shalabi dates.

These growers used selective breeding to create a new kind of dark, flavourful Medjool dates. A possible allusion to the widespread belief that Shalabi dates are the best in terms of both appearance and taste.

Seasonal Availability

Shalabi dates are typically harvested in the summer months, from July to September. The peak season for shalaby dates is August. During this time, shalaby dates are fresh and have the best flavour and texture.

Characteristics of Shalabi Khajoor

Appearance and Texture

Shalabi dates - origin - texture - taste - price - culinary benefits - nutritional benefits

Shalaby dates are somewhat sweet, and their texture is like that of raisins, with a brownish shell.

They are distinguished by their big size, yielding flesh, and sugary taste. Shalabi dates are stronger in flavour and tend to be dark brown or black.

Shalabi khajoor have a tender, chewy consistency. When compared to dates like Medjool, these are far less sticky.

These dates are distinctive because of their huge size and plump, teardrop form.

Their skin is generally wrinkled, and they have a dark brown colour with a slight black tint sometimes.

Flavour

Shalabi dates taste similar to caramel and include hints of molasses, and dehydrated fruit. They have a more nuanced flavour profile and are somewhat sweeter than other varieties of dates.

You may find a more earthy, nutty flavour in Shalabi dates. The “deep” flavour of the dates, they believe, is evocative of other dried fruits like figs and apricots.

The taste of these dates has been compared to that of “melt-in-your-mouth” chocolate, according to some reviewers. Their “silky” texture and “decadent” flavour are frequently praised.

Moisture Content

Shalabi dates have a moisture content of 15%.

Nutritional Values in Shalabi Dates

Shalabi dates are a nutritious food that is a good source of fibre, potassium, vitamins B6 and C, and other essential nutrients. They are a low-calorie food and a good source of natural sugars.

Nutritional Value per 100 g of shalabi dates
Energy331 Cal
Total Carbs80 g
Fat0.4 g
Protein2.8 g

Culinary Uses of Shalabi Khajur

Culinary Uses of shalabi Dates

Shalabi dates offer culinary versatility, finding their way into various delectable dishes. They can make baked goods such as cookies, cakes, and pies even better with their natural sweetness. Shalabi khajur play a savoury role, making appearances in stuffing and couscous among other savoury creations.

For those seeking a healthier alternative to conventional sweeteners like sugar, honey, or molasses, date syrup is an excellent choice. You can achieve a smooth, syrupy consistency by soaking a cup of pitted dates in half a cup of water until soft, possibly adding more water as needed. Shalaby dates, with their slightly dry nature, are particularly well-suited for crafting syrups.

Date syrup can also elevate your breakfast game, becoming a delightful topping for pancakes, toast, yoghurt, and porridge. As a vegan, all-natural sweetener, Shalaby dates can also enhance your baking endeavours or blend seamlessly into smoothies.

You can also use Shalabi dates to make a creative fudge. For a healthy take on fudge, simply blend pitted dates and cacao powder. For a nuttier and heartier flavour, consider incorporating desiccated coconut or chopped cashew nuts into the mix.

Drawing from a rich history of Middle Eastern cuisine, Shalaby dates harmonize beautifully with other ingredients and spices when simmered in a slow cooker, tagine, or stew.

One ingenious use of shalabi dates is crafting a cheesecake crust. The naturally sticky texture of dates complements the indulgence of cheesecake perfectly. Transform this into a wholesome family snack by blending 1 cup of macadamia nuts, 1 cup of walnuts, 1 cup of pitted dates, and a pinch of salt.

Price

600 to 800 INR per kg in India and 18 to 10 USD per pound in the USA.

Where to Buy?

You can buy shalabi dates online on the below websites.

India:

justnuts

USA:

hirfiyah

saudimade

Final Thoughts

Shalabi dates stand out from other date varieties in taste, texture, and overall appeal. The date’s natural characteristics give it a robust taste. Dry and tasty, these Shalaby dates are a one-of-a-kind treat every time. You may savour them on their own as a nutritious snack, or you can pair them with some cheese and almonds.

Kurma dates, Safawi dates and Ajwa dates share similar characterises to Shalabi dates.

Kurma dates are medium-sized dates with a dark brown colour and a sweet, caramelized flavour. They are similar to shalabi dates in terms of flavour and texture.

Safawi dates are small, light brown dates with a sweet, honey-like flavour. They are similar to shalabi dates in terms of sweetness.

Ajwa dates are small, black dates with a sweet, nutty flavour. They are similar to shalabi dates in terms of their culinary applications.

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