Apricot kernels are the seeds found inside the stones of apricots. They are light brown in colour and so similar to small almonds. Although apricot kernels are sold as nuts, in botanical terms Apricots are drupes. The kernels of the apricots grown in central Asia and around the Mediterranean are so sweet they are used as a substitute for almonds. They are known as SAK – Sweet Apricot Kernels. Elsewhere, apricot kernels are generally
strong-tasting and bitter, known as BAK – Bitter Apricot Kernels. In the confectionary industry, apricot kernels are used to make persipan (a substitute for marzipan) or as an ingredient in marzipan (BAKs are added to the mix to get a flavour with a little more bite). Other applications are the production of liqueurs like Amaretto and oils used in the cosmetics industry as a substitute for the more expensive almond oil.
Raw apricot kernels are high in fat and vitamin B17 (also known as laetrile), the latter thought to be a potential cancer treatment by alternative health practitioners.
Kenkko can supply both natural and blanched BAK and SAK.