A slightly smaller, smooth skinned species of the peach with juice that is mildly spicy and rich in flavor. Dried Nectarines, generally treated with sulfur to improve their color and lengthen shelf life, are also available. There are many different varieties of Nectarines grown today, but they are most often sold not by variety but by the color of their flesh, either white or yellow. A white Nectarine has a flavor similar to the yellow Nectarine but is slightly sweeter and delicate tasting, due to the lower acid to sugar ratio. The flesh is white and juicy.
When selecting fresh nectarines, look for fruit with a sweet smell and those without bruises or greenish areas. Ripe fruit should yield when slight pressure is applied. Unripe fruit can be stored in a paper bag at room temperature until they are ripe. Ripe nectarines can be stored up to a week in the refrigerator.
To pit a nectarine, cut it in half down to the pit using a small sharp knife, then hold both halves and twist slightly to separate them. Remove the pit from the half it is in. It may be necessary to use a small knife to pry the pit out.