Apple Day, a photo from the Boing Boing Flickr Pool


Ambrosia apples. Mysteriously juicy & crisp. Portland’s got a big apple tasting at a nursery each year, these are my fave of the 80 or so tastes.


I like my apples like I don’t like my people: hard, big and sour.

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Lovely sharp Bramleys cooked up with blackberries, with a crumble topping. Oh yes!

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Red Delicious Apples: 2 out of 3 ain’t bad


My long two-pointed ladder’s sticking through a tree
Toward heaven still,
And there’s a barrel that I didn’t fill
Beside it, and there may be two or three
Apples I didn’t pick upon some bough.
But I am done with apple-picking now.
-Robert Frost


Alas, I don’t see any cider apples in there.

I was reflecting on our last chat here about apples… didn’t someone mention Cortlands then? A few weeks ago, my produce guy Donald, mentioned that a box of apples had come in of a variety he had never heard of, something new or just something new to him. I said I’d give it a try and he went to the back of the store and fetched it out. It was a box of Cortland apples, an old variety I think and more popular on the East Coast perhaps. I had only heard of them, never tasted them and so Donald cut into one and gave me a slice. The apple is classic in color, like an artist’s rendering in oil of the perfect apple – dark red with a touch of brown, and at the stem it’s bright green. But what surprised Donald and me too as he cut into it was that the flesh is very white, the flavor sweet-tart. The skin is a bit tough, which makes me think this apple was a ‘keeper’ in people’s cellars once. Also probably a good cider apple. It made for an excellent apple crumble, even when sliced thin it kept up some texture.

Naturally, when I went back to get more there were only five or six apples left, and the produce guys doubted any more would come in. It was just something ‘corporate’ had sent out to the store, not an item ordered by the manager. I made a point of telling Gary how much I enjoyed the few I got and hoped to see them again next year. I recommend them here to the Happy Mutants if you’re lucky enough to find them.


I live in Vermont. Cortlands are a classic New England Apple. Most of the orchards up here grow them and they are pretty easy to find in the local grocery stores and at the local farmstands.

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The Ambrosia apple was discovered by the uncle of friends of mine.

We are lucky enough to live in one of the best apple-producing areas in Canada – the Okanagan Valley (next door to the Similkameen Valley). We go nuts buying apples each fall. They’re cheap and plentiful.

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They’re still my favorites (and the ones in the picture look like splendid specimens), but I’m always looking to find varieties I like better. Haven’t yet, but haven’t given up either.

I like my apples like I like people: mealy and unremarkable.

Or something…

I love that we here in Minnesota have some wonderful orchards around us and a great research facility in the University of Minnesota that has developed some great apples. My favorites this fall have been Sweet 16s and Zestars.

I’ve been attending Portland Nursery’s annual apple tasting for years, and finally decided I liked the Liberty variety enough to buy a tree and plant it. I’m on my 3rd harvest - we had about 50 apples this year! They’re firm, sweet-tart, wonderful to eat out of hand, and the dogs love to eat the less-than-perfect specimans.


Sweetango apples are fantastic, if you can find them in good condition. Their availability is very limited. I live in one of their markets (St. Louis), was barely able to get any this year, and hadn’t seen them since 2010.

Sweetango cider is magical. Haven’t seen it since 2010 either.

Honeycrisps are the bee’s knees.

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Said tasting, in action.


For the last several months we have had our own version of a Waldorf salad once or twice a week for dinner, with more apple than is probably usual. We enjoy trying different varieties of apples in it, but haven’t yet settled on one favorite. I’ll eat other fruits during the day as well, but I’m fine with having fresh apples more than once a day.

Only if you get them from the produce section. But picked right off the tree? There isn’t a better apple than the Red Delicious.

At the market you want to go Fuji. Gala if you have no other choice.

I get to spread the word about my beloved Paula Reds! They’re available (around my area) about a freaking month out of the year, and I get into an apple-eating frenzy every time. I like my apples to have a good mix of tart along with the sweet, and I love a crisp texture that feels porous and easy to snap (like a very delicate piece of styrofoam, for lack of a better analogy).

I also love a big, fat, ripe McIntosh, which are a bit easier to find.

Paula Reds and Macs are the rare few apples I can eat without my palate and throat itching and my lips blistering. I seem to have a very random allergy to some fruits, down to the very breed (I can also eat Granny Smiths without this effect, but I don’t like the firm texture as much).

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I like my apples like I like my people

Bitter and thick-skinned.

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