From Medjool to Sukkari dates, there is a lot to choose from
It’s that time of the year again when the market is flooded with delicious dates from West Asia and Africa.
From South African Medjool dates that cost a whopping Rs. 2,000 a kg, to dates from Iran that cost Rs. 150 a kg, there is a lot to choose from. The other varieties of dates that have arrived in the city include Sukkari, Khudri, Sagai, Safawi and Kalmi. Customers can also try raisins from Afghanistan and Iran as well as almonds and figs from Iran.
With the month of Ramzan having commenced on Monday, the demand for dates is expected to go up in the coming days.
“We have 76 varieties of dates, some of which are packed in attractive gift packs. A number of these dates are exotic and are usually not available in India otherwise,” said Mohammed Idrees Choudhury of Delicious Dry Fruits in Russell Market. “The clientele is not restricted to those observing fast during Ramzan. It extends to the larger population that waits for this time to pick up their favourite dates,” he added.
For those who are willing to splurge, there are also gift packs that combine dates with saffron, almond, cashew, honey and cardamom. “The cost of the gift packs goes up to Rs. 4,000 a kg. Though on the higher side, these gift packs also sell well,” said Mr. Choudhury, who claimed to have the largest collection of dates in Bangalore. It’s not just Bangaloreans making a beeline to purchase this succulent fruit. Delicious Dry Fruits counts people from places such as Bidar, Hassan, Mysore, Hubli, Mangalore and Gulbarga as its regular customers.
Rahim Khan, former Bidar legislator, was among those who came to Russell Market in search of the best dates. “We don’t get such wide variety anywhere else so I come here every year,” he said.
With Muslims considering it traditional to break fast during Ramzan with dates, less expensive varieties are also being sold in other shops and pushcarts.