Hosaini grape

Ark of taste
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Angor Hosaini

The fruits are medium in size, its diameter ranges from 3 to 4 cm, and the weight of each grape ranges from 4 to 5 gr. They are ovoid in shape and contain 2-3 seeds inside the berry. The fruits are dark green at the beginning in the cluster, change to green at the middle of the maturation and finally to light yellow when they are completely ripened. The bunches are large, short and conical clusters, and they weigh between 0.5 – 0.7 kg.
This grape berry has a sweet natural taste with leathery, non-astringent skin, and a waxy covering with bloom on their outer skins. It is fleshier than other types of grapes such as Monagha and Del-e- Morgh varieties.

Angor Hosaini is recognized as a native variety of grape in Herat and Kapisa provinces, and it has been traditionally considered one of the best varieties for the production of Abjush raisin in Kapisa, Parwan, Bulkh and Kabul provinces. It has been also introduced in other regions of Afghanistan like Kandahar.

Angor Hosaini is 3 -5.5 metres tall with medium, round and hard stems.
In Herat province, because of its strong winds, the vines are traditionally cultivated in the earthen mounds system, and they lay on the stacks of mud. However, in other places of the country, they are grown on earth–trellised systems. After 2-4 years, the stems become strong, and the branches acquire holding capacity. Generally the vineyards of the Hosaini grapes are planted without stand.
Angor Hosaini is propagated by cuttings because of early fruit production. It has a flat and shallow roots system, its leaves are medium in size and light green in its colour with a cordate shape. Flowers grow in cluster shape on the opposite side and leaves appear along the shoot at the end of April. The most convenient temperature for its growth is between 20 -28 0 C and for fruit ripening is between 35-40 0 C. The Hosaini grape is used as fresh fruit, as well as for the production of juice and vinegar. The majority of producers processed this grape into green or red and big size raisins, following the Abjush methods. The grapes that are dried under the sun become dark red raisin and are called black raisin. Those raisins are dried under the shadow acquire a green colour and, for that, are called green raisin. Along with Haita and Laal raisins, raisins made from Hosaini grape are regarded as one of the best product all over the country. Processing of Hosaini grape into Abjush green raisin traditionally begins with the harvesting of the clusters of grapes that are immersed for a few seconds into boiling water, hung by string to the tied stands inside the special house called Kishmish Khana and, eventually, left to dry in the shade. This process takes 20-25 days. After drying, the grapes are separated from the clusters, cleaned and stored in a suitable place at room temperature. The same method is used for the prduction of black raisins, except for the drying pahse that take place directly under the sun.
Hosaini is one of a special native variety of grape out of one hundred native varieties of grapes cultivated in Herat and Kapisa provinces.
It is fresh and sweet, having a similar taste to that of Laal and Haita varieties. It is a very well-known grape all over the country.
Many people in Herat and other part of the country use it as a fresh fruit or processed into juice. However, the majority of local people appreciate this variety for the production of Kishmish -e- Sabz and Sia (Abjush green and black raisin). This raisin is one of most important dry fruit products in Afghanistan domestic market, as well as on regional and international markets. Moreover, the fresh grape is highly market friendly in Afghanistan, and it is even exported to Gulf countries, playing a crucial role for small-scale farmer’s economy in Herat, Parwan, Kapisa, Bulkh and Kandahar provinces.
Thanks to the technical support of Slow Food International to introduce the raisin of Afghanistan in the table of Terra Madre, the Hosaini Abjush raisin has increased in terms of quality and quantity. Currently it is also exported to different countries. In this case all farmers prefer to produce more Hosaini Abjush raisin and extend the Hosaini, Laal, Haita and Fakhry varieties vineyard it is good for their economic empowerment of the farmers. However, more attention should be paid also to other local grape varieties. The Abjush raisin was the first market friendly raisin with high price due to its quality and structure.

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Fruit, nuts and fruit preserves

Nominated by:Abdullah Faiz