Apples may be the most versatile fruit and are a healthy choice as well. There are many varieties and each has a particular flavor, texture, and use.
See also Braeburn, Criterion, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith and Jonagold apples.
The apple is probably everyone’s favorite fruit for its taste and versatility. It pairs well with pork, turns into mouthwatering pies, and is a sweet treat when caramel-coated. All ages can enjoy apples in their many varieties and forms.
Today, China is the largest producer, followed by the United States (with the majority of crops coming from Washington).
There are more than 7,000 apple varieties, many of which are sold according to region. Selection should be based on intended use – some will be high in sugars while others are more tart. The most familiar types include:
Braeburn (gold to red) – baking, freezing, fresh, pies, sauce
Cortland (red) – baking, fresh
Crispin/Mutsu (green) – baking, fresh, sauce
Fuji (yellow-green to red) – freezing, fresh
Gala (yellow/orange with striping) – baking, fresh, sauce
Golden Delicious (yellow when ripe) – baking, freezing, fresh, pies, sauce
Granny Smith (bright green) – baking, freezing, fresh, pies, sauce
Jonagold (greenish-yellow with a blush) – baking, fresh, pies
Jonathan (red) – fresh, dried
McIntosh (green-yellow with striping) – fresh, sauce
Pippin (green or orange, although there are several varieties) - baking, fresh, pies, sauce
Red Delicious (red-ruby) – fresh
Rome Beauty (red) – baking, pies
Winesap (red) – baking, cider, fresh, sauce
• Avoid bagged apples, if possible. Individual selection and inspection will yield the best fruits.
• The Cortland is highly recommended for salads as it is slow to oxidize.
• Tart apples (Granny Smith/Pippin) tend to hold their shape better when baking. Add sugars for balance. Granny Smiths are the preferred choice for caramel apples.
• When in season, buy locally. Markets and stands will have unique varieties. These may not be perfect, however. Expect some blotching and a rougher texture.
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