Dried apricots are a type of traditional dried fruit. When treated with sulfur dioxide (E220), the color is vivid orange. Organic fruit not treated with sulfur vapor is darker in color and has a coarser texture. Generally, the lighter the color, the higher the SO2 content.
Apricots have been cultivated in Central Asia since antiquity, and dried ones were an important commodity on the Silk Road. They could be transported over huge distances due to their long shelf life. Before the 20th century, they were ubiquitous in the Ottoman, Persian, and Russian Empires.
Small apricots are normally dried whole. Larger varieties are dried in halves, without the kernel or stone. In the former Soviet Union, the former is known as Uruk (урюк), used primarily for making compote, and the latter as kuraga (курага).
Dried apricots are an important source of carotenoids (vitamin A) and potassium. Due to their high fiber-to-volume ratio, they are sometimes used to relieve constipation or induce diarrhea. Dried apricots normally do not have any sugar added and have a low glycemic index. The maximum moisture rate allowed in Uzbekistan is 24%.