explore the delicious world of apples
By Sarah Harper
The arrival of Autumn brings cozy nostalgia. From fall festivals to the colorful foliage to joyous apple picking, it all comes together to capture the spirit of the season.
For me, apples are a symbol of fall. Farmers markets brim with them, and restaurants are weaving apples into their seasonal menus. It's a wonderful time to incorporate apples into your culinary creations.
Now, let's explore the world of apples and discuss their culinary uses.
The United States grows about 2,500 different varieties of apples. Some top varietals grown in the Pacific Northwest include Red Delicious, Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, Pink Lady, and Honeycrisp.
Flavor profiles differ widely among apples. From sweet, tart, sharp, firm, crisp, juicy, dry, crunchy, spicy, tender, or tangy, each varietal has its culinary purpose. Some apples are best for eating fresh in a salad or as a snack, while others are better for baking, making into cider, apple butter, or applesauce.
For instance, are you looking to bake an apple dessert this fall? Consider Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, and Jazz Apples. These varieties are firm and hold their shape well when baking. They also have a balanced flavor profile and pair well with spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg.
While you can find apples in supermarkets year-round, there is something magical about using freshly picked apples from your local farm stand or handpicked.
Beyond Dehydrated Apples and Homemade Applesauce, you can toss apples in lunch boxes, plop them in Baked Oats, add them to charcuterie boards, mix them in a Harvest Kale and Quinoa Salad, or add them to baked dishes and desserts like a Warm Maple Walnut Apple Crisp.
Baked Apples with a Pecan Oat Topping
Baked apples are simple and easy to make for several reasons. They require minimal ingredients and have a quick prep time. Moreover, baked apple recipes are customizable, versatile, and don't require fancy equipment.
Now, get cooking!
Are you feeling motivated to cook with apples yet?
I challenge you to make a delicious apple recipe to celebrate fall, even something savory! From Apple Pecan Chicken Salad to Kale Apple Walnut Salad to Broccoli Salw Salad with Apples to Apple Cheddar Muffins, let your taste buds be your guide.
Sarah Harper is a Registered Dietitian, creator, and one of many eaters behind The Addy Bean. She is also an avid hiker, a registered yoga instructor, and a former nursing home dietitian.
Based in Hood River, Oregon, Sarah lives with her husband Jacob, her dog Huey and her blog’s namesake – her cat Adeline.