Woo Hoo! Fall is finally here! Well, at least it is for most of the country. We’re still having plenty of hot weather here in southern California and I’m more than ready for the cooler temperatures!
On top of the relief from the sweltering heat of Summer, Fall also ushers in all kind of other things I love. Things like all the wonderful baked goods made with pumpkin, the return of Pumpkin Lattes at Starbucks, the arrival of winter squash, the crispness in the air, turning of the leaves, bonfires, hayrides, the knowledge that Halloween is just around the corner, etc.
One of my favorite things about Fall is the arrival of so many of my favorite varieties of apple that are in season right now! One of the things I really miss as a result of living in southern California is going to the orchard to pick apples. There’s just nothing in the world like an apple picked fresh and ripe right from the tree!
Even though I can’t go to the orchard to pick my own apples, there’s still lots of opportunities for picking up some of my favorites at the local farmer’s markets, the supermarket, specialty markets, etc. Heck, even my local Target has a few varieties of Fall apples.
What are some of these Fall varieties you ask? Well, let me tell you! We talking varieties like Braeburn, Cameo, Honey Crisp, Crisps Pink/Pink Lady™, Scifresh/Jazz™, Jonagold, Pippin, Empire, etc. If you enjoy heirloom produce, Fall brings the arrive of the Sierra Beauty and Spitzenburg apples, too. As you can see, there’s no reason for us to stick with the same old Fuji and Granny Smith apples we can get all year round!
Confused by all these varieties and don’t know which ones you might like? Here’s a handy chart from the folks at Sage Fruit that shows the tartness/sweetness of a lot of common apple varieties. It’s kind of small here in the post, but you can go on and click the image to see a larger version of it. There are also icons to show which are best for eating, cooking, and/or baking which is also really handy!
Here are a few fun facts about apples for you, too! Did you know:
- Each year, the average American eats about 45 lbs. of apples. (source)
- A medium apple is only about 80 calories and are a great source of the fiber pectin. One apple has five grams of fiber. (source)
- Apples are fat, sodium, and cholesterol free. (source)
- The complex carbohydrates in apples give your body a longer, more even energy boost compared to high- sugar snacks. (source)
- Apples contain phytonutrients which are antioxidants and help to combat the effects of bad LDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is bad cholesterol, and preventing the effects of it will help prevent heart disease. (source)
- Studies by researchers at Cornell University show that the combination of phytochemicals in apples play a very important role in antioxidant and anti- cancer activity. (source)
- Daily apple eaters breathe more easily due to stronger lung function. (source)
- Apples contain boran, an essential trace element that helps harden bones decreasing the effects of osteoporosis. (source)
- Apples, peaches and raspberries are actually all members of the rose family. (source)
- The first food eaten in space by a United States astronaut was applesauce. (source)
See, what’s not to love about apples?! Not only are they a low-calorie tasty treat, they have loads of other benefits for your health, too!
Do you like apples? What are your favorite varieties? Will you be branching out and trying something new this Fall? Leave us a comment and let us know!
Image courtesy of Paul / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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