An apple a day

I heard a news report on WAMC earlier this week about how this season’s crop of apples could be the best in about a decade– all those sunny summer days have made for an extra-sweet supply this fall. The New York State Dept. of Agriculture and Markets says, “The quality of the fruit this season is outstanding, with growers predicting a crop size of 29.5 million bushels.”

It got me thinking about apple picking and apple pie and apple cider and apple turnovers and applesauce and… well, you get the idea.

Frank Browning’s Apples (North Point Press, 1998) offers readers a brief overview of apples– their history, current popularity, and even tips on growning your own orchard.

Nicole Routhier’s Fruit Cookbook (Workman Publishing, 1996) has more ways to cook and bake with apples than I ever thought possible: apple and cheddar cheese biscuits, apple and roasted pepper dip with steamed shrimp, apple iced tea with apricots, applesauce horseradish, and a rustic chicken stew with dried apples.

Chez Panisse Fruit by Alice Waters (HarperCollins, 2002) has recipes for cabbage salad with walnuts and apples, green apple sherbet, and an apple custard tart. Alice Waters opened Chez Panisse in 1971.

For those of you for whom apple pie is the the only way to cook an apple, Pat Willard’s Pie Every Day (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 1997) means you can eat a new apple pie every day for at least a week: apple-cheese pie, traditional apple pie, apple custard pie, Dutch apple pie, apple-raisin… rosy apple… cranberry-applesauce…. mmmm….

 And when you’re finished with all that cooking, you can relax with Cider Hard and Sweet by Ben Watson (The Countryman Press, 1999), a cultural and historical overview of apple cider, complete with recipes for cider (and cooking/baking with cider).

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