The Medjool date is one of the largest dates taking about one to two bites to eat. It is the most desirable because of its sweetness, large size, soft texture and beauty. The Medjool date is a dark brown fruit, waxy looking on the outside with a think skin, (yet thinner that most other dates) and soft and mushy on the inside. It is one of the sweetest fruits comparable to the jack fruit and mango. They are very easy to prepare. They can be eaten directly off of the date palm or you can stuff them. Some people add walnuts, almonds or cream cheese. In Spain they wrap bacon around them and fry them. A favorite in the Coachella valley is the date smoothie made with date paste. Most are harvested in the fall starting around September with a softer variety and later in October, with a firmer feel. The importance of the date lies in the high nutritive value. Many people consume the date because of it. The sugar content is about 80%. It is an excellent source of potassium and is high in fiber. It also has protein, fat and mineral products including copper, sulfur, iron, and magnesium.
I had my first taste of the Medjool date when I went to my husband’s family farm in the Coachella Valley. I was astonished to see enormous date palm trees everywhere in the area. Also I was fascinated that someone has actually created a movie about the date palm, called something like The Life of a Date Palm. They had great shakes there but the best tasting date came from my husband’s family farm, right of the shoot. I could not believe I was missing out on such ecstasy. My husband gave me a brief historical overview. Date Palms are the oldest cultivated tree in the world dating back over 5,000 to 7,000 years. It is what sustained the nomadic tribes of the Middle and North Africa. They are originally said to be from Morocco. The date palm was once only served to dignitaries and royalty; But in the 1920′s a disease threatened the date-growing industry in Morocco and they sent a few immature palms to be replanted in the United States. And that is how it arrived in the US. Great fruit you would be a fool to pass on the sweet taste of a medjool date.