Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Power of an Apple

Apples. My favourite fruit and my second favourite food. With so many varieties (over 7500, I believe), there is no more varied fruit anywhere. Got a sweet tooth, try a Honey Crisp. Want a little bite back? Granny Smith may be your gal. Want to deter browning? Try an Envy.

Last month, I went on a crazy apple kick, buying in total over 200 lbs of apples from my friends at Martin's Apples in St. Jacobs, ON.

For two weeks, I peeled, diced, simmered, juiced and otherwise consumed every apple and at least 1 of every single kind they had in store. Christmas presents this year were apple butter, applesauce and apple onion sourdough. We made apple and cheddar pie, szechwan pork and apple stir fry, 4 different kinds of apple bread and dried apple skins.

My obsession with apples began as a kid, when making apple pie with my grandma. Not only were apples something I could eat to keep the doctor away, but every part was usable in some way and she made sure I did so. We would peel and core the apples and use the sweet flesh for pie. The cores went into the backyard for the critters (and promptly disappeared) and the skins we dried in the oven with cinnamon to make apple chips.
As an adult, I have learned how to bring my apple cookery beyond the humble apple pie, and an entire new world has been opened. But, keeping with my grandma's teachings, the cores always go to our backyard friends, the skins always get dried and hopefully, my kids will be teaching their kids the same process 30 years from now.
I love tradition.

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