Saturday, October 21, 2017

A boom in heritage apples, in the UK

The Guardian, in a story published on Apple Day (today), describes

a burgeoning movement of growers and enthusiasts using old books and modern DNA testing to identify, propagate, and popularise Britain’s wealth of rare apples.

According to the story,

Britain is enjoying a remarkable apple boom, as hundreds of new community orchards revive lost varieties and contribute to a thriving heritage market.

These include many varieties not catalogued by the National Fruit Collection.

One organization even employs an Apple Diversity Officer. Now, there's a job to dream on!

Gather ye Apples while ye May


The scene at the Union Square (Somerville) farmers market earlier today.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Frostbite

Is there a fitter name for an apple that is cold-hardy down to −40° F? (The tree, not the fruit.)


But the best thing? It's really good.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

This Week: Baldwin


Once the king of American apples, this variety is named for the Revolutionary War hero who popularized it.

Baldwins are crisp, hard, and richly flavored. They mellow in storage.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Ribston and Cox's Orange Pippins


Long have I sought to pair these two English apples. Cox's is legendary, and Ribston, also known as Glory of York, is widely supposed to be Cox's parent.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Firecracker (Bill's Redflesh, Scarlet Surprise)


According to the grower, these diminutive crabapples—the largest might be an inch tall—are super tart and used to make cider.

The staff at Shelburne Farm told me that these were Firecrackers. Maybe they are, but I have some doubts, aired later in this post.

The apples are certainly pretty enough, though imperfect. This orchard sustained a good deal of hail damage last summer.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

White Crabapple


I do not know if the name of this apple is an error, a joke, or something else (named for a Mr. or Ms. White?), but I was not expecting this flamingo-pink interior.

The elongated, olive-shaped  fruit is small, though large for a crabapple, about 2 inches high. Each has a glossy peel that blushes from a delicate pink-orange wash to a saturated red.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Welcome to autumn!

It's apple season, welcome to Adam's Apples! If you are curious about this fruit you have come to the right place.

Here you can find more than 260 different varieties described in my opinionated catalog. If that's more than you can chew, you might visit my seasonal guide or my Michelin-style rating system for apples.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Chenango Strawberry


Spoiler alert: No strawberry flavors in mine. And it might not even be the right apple (but I think it is).

I have two of these charmingly named apples (SheNANGo, or so I imagine), medium sized, oblated, and with the merest ribbing.

The streaky red blush covers yellow green and is a dull crimson at its deepest. Prominent large light lenticels decorate the Strawberry's face. They provide some tactile bumpiness, and the strands of russet are rough to the touch.

There are also dimples and divots from hail, a grassy aroma, and a satiny finish.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Reinette Clochard (de Parthenay)

Clochard is straightforward enough: it means "tramp" (sometimes translated as "hobo.") Reinette means...whatever it is that Reinette means.


That part is a little less straightforward, but in regard to apples if you read the link you will see why I take the word to be a claim of a kind of quality. A reinette is a cut above.

So "Reinette Clouchard" suggests a quality apple, but one with a rough common touch.

Let's see.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Harvest in Earnest


I didn't bother to count all the kinds of apples for sale in Davis Square earlier today.

Monday, September 25, 2017

This Week: Opalescent

For an old-fashioned, high-quality desert apple, try the splendid Opalescent—if you can! This heritage apple is hard to find.


Opalescent is large and handsome: I use this photo of it as my personal online avatar.