My Guide to Apples!
Apples are here! Here is my quick guide to picking the right apple for you.
Apples make a great addition to a variety of meals. Tart apples are used in pies and cider, more acidic apples are used to complement a main course, sweeter apples add life to a salad, become juice (a sweetener substitute) and are perfect for eating.
Apples don’t have fat, cholesterol or sodium, which may help you maintain heart health and a healthy weight. These little power houses have both soluble and in soluble fiber - you know the cliche - don’t make me say it!
What is available near you may be the same varieties available year round across the country. If you live in a four seasons weather climate, you are probably near an apple farm. You will get to eat apples that have thin yet crisp skin and only initial surface acidity atop inches of sweet flesh.
If you live further from apple farms, or it is out of season, you will have to contend with apples picked before their prime. These apples typically have thicker skin so they can withstand the travel and handling. Depending on how they were shipped and for how long will dictate the condition of the flesh and acidity concentration.
If you happen to bite into a tart one, cut it and freeze it for later baking or cooking.
Here is a quick guide to the most common supermarket apples:
These are great eating apples. Crisp, juicy slightly subacid white flesh with outstanding texture. Fuji is the most extensively planted apple variety worldwide. They may require up to 200 days to mature - find out when they arrived in your local store and how long until the next shipment.
Fruit beautiful deep red color, size variable. Flesh white, firm, tender, very juicy, flavor characteristically aromatic, perfumed, subacid - definitely eating or juicing apples
Well known for their bright green color. They are referred to as having a “tart-sweet-tart” flavor meaning it is mostly tart but with a hint of sweetness. Its firm texture and good size, as well as its unique flavor makes it ideal for baking and roasting.
Deep red skin covers a sweeter flavored apple. This variety offers the most antioxidants per serving. It is the most popular apple (purchased the most) in the US. Red Delicious is not a native type of apple but was scientifically created to have a more resistant skin and could travel longer distances. Should be stored in the refrigerator or it will shrivel and get mealy. Not for cooking.
Large conic golden yellow fruit. Firm, crisp, juicy, flavorful flesh. Mild sweet distinctive flavor. Just like its Red cousin should be stored in the refrigerator. Requires gentle picking, bruises easily.
Excellent for fresh eating. A very pretty, medium size, apple with a lot of sweet slightly tart flavor and juice.
Oblong, green fruit turns yellow at maturity and is overlaid with pink or light red. Fine-grained, white flesh. Thin skin bruises easily. These are often smaller than other apples. I think they are great peeled, and roasted whole.
Medium sized, round, dark red fruit with crisp, juicy yellow flesh with a spicy, vinous flavor and aroma. These are amazing in Euro style tarts, chutneys and served with roasts.
A New Zealand import, is a red and green-gold color that is sweet, aromatic, and juicy. A great eating apple if it was picked and shipped within 1 months time.
Apples to Juice to Cider to Brandy
Apple juice is the most common fruit juice in the world. At least 55 million tonnes of apples were grown worldwide in 2005, with a value of about $10 billion. China produced about two-fifth of this total - including the 7.5% of the world production. Turkey, France, Italy and Iran are among the leading apple exporters.
When apples are pressed into juice, the juice is left to ferment which becomes cider. Let that cider ferment for a long time and you arrive at brandy. It is never worth it to buy inferior apple brandy. These are usually full of additives to speed up the fermentation process and the taste will be compromised.