6 great ways apples can be consumed: how to pick the right apple for the job

Today, there are many sweet and vibrant varieties of apple to choose from. This versatile fruit can be used in everything from baked goods to fresh juice. Here are six great ways to enjoy an apple.

6 great ways apples can be consumed: how to pick the right apple for the job

Apples have been a staple in North America since the founding of Jamestown, Virginia in 1607. But those colonial trees did not produce the succulent fruit that we know today. The first apples in North America were small and bitter. They were used to make cider, which could be relied on when water was scarce or unfit to drink. Nowadays, the fruit is commonly consumed in many different ways.

1. As a snack

For crispness and flavour, almost any apple is a joy. But these varieties are known for their great and distinctive taste:

  • Braeburn: mildly sweet flavour
  • Empire: aromatic, similar to the classic McIntosh
  • Cortland: tart, with a hint of strawberry in its flavor
  • Jonagold: rich, honey flavor

2. Atop salads

Apples make terrific additions to salads. Experiment with different varieties to see which best bring out the flavour of your favourite salads.

To keep sliced apples from browning, squirt them with a bit of lemon juice. Remember to leave the skins on for maximum nutrition.

3. Applesauce

If you’re a fan of applesauce, select softer apples as they’ll cook down faster. You can avoid adding sugar if you choose sweet varieties. Here are some great options for applesauce:

  • Fuji: complex flavour, both sweet and tart
  • Idared: coarse and earthy taste
  • Northern Spy: a tart edge to its sweetness

But you might like the results if you blend all three! You can also add berries in season for a flavourful applesauce.

4. Baked apples

Choose varieties with strong flavour and firm flesh for the best results if you're baking apples:

  • Rome Beauty
  • Honeycrisp
  • Crispin

5. Apple pie

The same goes for baking an apple pie: look for varieties that have flesh that’ll stay firm during baking. Try one of these options or a combination thereof:

  • Cortland: sweetness that holds up well after baking, so you can use a bit less brown sugar
  • Idared; tangy and slightly acidic, and will make a great pie if you plan to top it with whipped cream or ice cream
  • Northern Spy: great for a classic apple pie, one that your grandmother would probably like

6. Juice

Don't forget apple juice! Once you open a quart or gallon container, it will "harden" over time, developing an alcohol content in the refrigerator and turning to cider in a week or so. You'll find the flavour to be quite different from the sweetness of the juice.

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