Going bonkers for apples

Apples are always available, thanks to imports and long growing seasons. In the U.S., the second- largest apple grower in the world after China, 100 varieties are grown, but only half commercially. Apples are grown in every state. The top apple- producing states are Washington, New York, Michigan, California, Pennsylvania and Virginia. Apples are available in Texas from July through November. Different apple varieties have different skin colors, meaning the phytonutritent content of the skins varies in concentration and type of antioxidants. According to a report from Canada’s Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food, these apple varieties vary in antioxidant activity: Red Delicious’17,851 units, Golden Delicious’9, 616 units, and McIntosh ‘6,436 units to name a few. Apples have a lot of versatility; they can be eaten raw, cooked whole or made into sauces and butters that need little to no sugar, pressed into ciders, enjoyed in pies, cobblers and other desserts. Braeburn are orange to red over a yellow background and are tangy-sweet, firm, juicy and good for snacking, salads, pies and baked apples. Fuji are sweet, firm and good for sauces, snacking and in salads. Galas are small, crisp, very sweet and juicy, dries well and are good for snacking. Golden Delicious are mellow, crisp, juicy and great for snacking, salads, good for baking whole or in pies (might want to reduce the sugar). Granny Smith are tart, firm, hard and good for sauces and pies. Jonathan are sweet-tart and plays well with other apples in sauces and ciders. Also good for baking whole. McIntosh are tangy, tart and best used for snacking and applesauce but needs a thickener if used in pies due to its watery nature. Does not keep well. Red Delicious are the most well-known of all American varieties. It is crisp, juicy and best for eating fresh or in salads. Rome Beauty are mildly tart with a very thick skin and long shelf life. Best for baking whole and in sauces. Winesap have a strong sweet-sour flavor and best blended in cider with sweet varieties. Raw Applesauce Grandma used a grater and got sore knuckles, but you can make this in a food processor. It’s not necessary to peel the apples, but be sure to wash them well. Process quartered, cored apples in a food processor fitted with the metal blade (for coarser texture use a shredding disk and push the apples through the feed tube). Sweeten if needed. Add cinnamon for color and flavor. Next week: Star Fruit Facts in these articles are obtained from medical and clinical journals, scientific publications, and published tradebooks. These articles have been written and published strictly for information purposes. For any questions contact Susan at trijrsL@msn.com or www.fruitandveggienurse.com

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