Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Best Way to Get an Apple Naked

These are the apples my nephew picked this weekend, which I told him were destined for Thanksgiving Apple Pie, the most important pie of the entire holiday season, for sure.  These apples came for a tree that was planted, or at least allowed to grow, by someone long ago and has been left to grow wild.  It was obvious from the many broken limbs and crossing branches that it has had no pruning or attention in a long while. Similar to my tree at the little farm.   I've been reading about pruning lately, and from what I read, having too many branches on an apple tree can cause the fruit to be small, and make it more likely to have spots because air doesn't circulate.  I always thought pruning was mostly to get more fruit and to shape the tree in a user friendly way.  And I assumed grocery store apples don't have spots because they must be coated with pesticides, fungicides, and wax.  I've had the attitude that as long as I was satisfied with less than optimum fruit production, why bother with pruning.  Spots just mean it's natural, right?  And I mostly still feel that way, but as I was admiring these apples as I washed them, I was asking myself if I would prefer they be less spotty and bigger?  I'm going to learn to prune and see if it's any fun, and then I'll decide.   

I've been gearing up for a juice-centric fast, and having two five gallon buckets full of pears, and another bucket half full of apples, sealed the deal.  This week is a juice week, and this morning I made the first juices made with our own tree fruit.  In the picture above, I juiced the pears we picked, plus celery, and spinach.  It was perfect, and less costly too, since I didn't have to buy the organic fruit.  

The orange colored juice above is apples from our tree, plus carrots, ginger, and lime.  Brandon shuddered after he drank his down in a single gulp.  Maybe a tad too much ginger for a flavor wimp!  

These apples might be spotty, but they are beautiful anyway.  The variety of autumn colors in the apples make the tomatoes seem boring and garish in comparison, and I admire tomatoes!

I have such fun using the hand crank apple corer, peeler, and slicer do-hinky, and it really is the best way to get an apple naked in a hurry.  As you can see in the picture above, most of the spots are on the peel, and once it goes through the apple peeler it looks clean with just few places that are easy to see and cut away.  Sometimes the core is dark and crumbly, like a bug was living in it, but thankfully the corer cuts all that away, and when I cut the sliced up ball in half, I can see inside the cuts to make sure it's all gone.  This contraption is great, and the best part is that the very top and bottom slices have a little bit of peal on one edge, so I have to eat these pieces as I work.  I get to taste test every apple.  Ha! I just realized why I like this machine so much - I get a food reward every time I use it!  Like my dog, I could probably learn to do tricks if anyone took the time to train me.   

The apples looked so interesting after being peeled that it inspired me to explore some the photo effects on my cell phone camera.  The piece above is titled Apple Undressed, shot with the "vintage warm" effect.  

Hurry up holidays, I'm ready to make some pie!

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