Apricots, the first of California's summer fruit, are now in stores. The majority of apricots come about eight to 12 to the pound, depending on variety and the year. Color varies from deep yellow to golden orange.
Try out this season's fruit with an apricot Thai salad recipe: In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of sliced fresh apricots, 2 cups of diced cooked chicken, 1 cup of sliced cucumber and 1 cup of bean sprouts. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro, 2 teaspoons sugar, 1/4 cup vegetable oil and 1/2 teaspoon chili oil. Toss salad with vinaigrette and arrange on plates lined with leafy salad greens. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of peanuts and garnish with lime wedges. Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 300 calories; 21 grams protein; 15 grams carbohydrate; 19 grams fat; 48 milligrams cholesterol; 46 milligrams sodium; 3 grams fiber
-- Recipe and analysis from the California Fresh Apricot Council
* Learn to make fondue 7 p.m. June 7 at For the Love of Food in Reisterstown. $45. Call 877-246-2634.
* Plan early to attend the Gourmet Institute, a weekend of discussion, cooking demonstrations, tours and tastings Oct. 22-24 at Gourmet magazine's headquarters, 4 Times Square in New York City. Tickets are $1,295. Call 888-308-6133 or visit www.gourmetinstitute.com for more information.
Before you crack a crab
Just in time for crab season, Billingsgate Trading Co. offers its Crab Bag. The bag contains everything novice crab eaters need: mallets, cloth napkins, seafood picks, bib clips and stainless-steel butter cups.
The kit is available for $39.95 at www.billingsgatetradingco.com or by calling 866-BTC-4359.
In full view
Don't hide your fine pots in a cabinet. Gourmet Standard offers stainless-steel hanging pot racks in three sizes and styles. The racks can be mounted to a ceiling or wall, putting pots within easy reach and freeing up cabinet space.
The racks are available at gourmet and retail stores nationwide and have suggested retail prices of $159.99 and $169.99.
For more information, visit www.gourmetstandard.com or call 866-462-1895.
Hungry for dinner ideas?
You come home from work, the family is hungry and you have no idea what to cook. Sound familiar? Aviva Goldfarb, a writer, cook and mother of two who lives in Chevy Chase, has come up with a solution.
She is the author of The Six O'Clock Scramble, an e-mail newsletter that sends five dinner recipes and a grocery list each week to subscribers. The meals are designed to appeal to grown-ups and kids, so parents don't have to cook separate meals for each member of the family. Most take 30 minutes or less to prepare and have fewer than 10 ingredients.
Monthly subscriptions of four weekly issues cost $4.95. To subscribe, visit www.thescramble.com.
The Dish welcomes food news and notes. Send to The Dish, Attn.: Liz Atwood, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278; fax to 410-783-2519; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.