We picked about 7.5 bushels of apples from our late-bearing (Granny Smith?) tree. Not only was this more of an abundance than ever before, but the apples were larger and better-shaped than we've ever experienced. And we didn't completely strip the tree. What a fruit year!
Unfortunately they just aren't of marketable quality. Here you can see both sooty blotch (thanks Rachel for identifying that!) and apple scab, which is on the entire crop.
|Apple scab and sooty blotch|
They are just cosmetic flaws, but I doubt even an organic grocer would stock these. Americans are just so conditioned to having perfect-looking produce. I don't spray with fungicides, thus you get fungi.
Obviously there are more apples than any home grower could ever use. I find this quite sad. I doubt that even if I could locate a local food bank that accepts fresh foods, they would take them.
OK, what will we do with them? The Kitchen Goddess took 25 and canned 6 pints of applesauce.
|Unsweetened apple sauce|
Great, that leaves just 1,342 to go. Next weekend we will press 2 - 3 bushels into cider for fermenting. That should make 5 gallons of hard cider, enough to last us a long time. If we are energetic, we'll press one or two more gallons for fresh consumption (it goes bad fast). I wonder if you can freeze soft cider?
Sadly, I'm expecting that half the crop will just get dumped in the woods. But what can we do?
Thanks for reading! And thanks to Dave at Our Happy Acres, our host of Harvest Monday. Be sure to read all this week's submissions.
They might be unmarketable but they look great to me! I had several apple trees on my farm (including Granny Smith) and mine often had scab and sooty blotch but I ate them anyway. We dehydrate a lot of apples here, and also make apple leather with the dehydrator. I enjoy the dried apple slices as a snack, and in cold and hot cereal. The apple leather makes a great snack too.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Dave. We dry apple slices too, but I always forget to use them, so we have a lot piled up. Guess we'll just add to the pile!Delete
They look awesome! If i lived closer I would totally trade you for my veggies! You can ask neighbors if they'd like to take and make pies, I bet many would snatch it right up!ReplyDelete
Thanks, Jenny. I wish we could trade, too. Maybe I'll just dump a bushel of apples on each doorstep!Delete
Wow - what a glut! Apples are a favourite fruit around here, so if it was me, I would just keep them in the cold cellar and eat them all up over the next few months....and likely throw in an apple pie/tart/galette/crumble every once in a while. And apple muffins and pancakes are awesome too! If they are like Granny Smiths, they should last for several months in cold storage.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Margaret. We either have the basement, which doesn't get too cold, or the barn, which freezes. There are a lot of good uses for apples, but still...Delete
You can definitely freeze fresh pressed apple juice. I used to buy raw (unpasteurized) apple juice at the farmer's market, the producer brought it to market frozen rock hard, I would buy a few for the freezer and one to thaw in the fridge. Alas, no one at the market where I shop now carries it.ReplyDelete
7.5 bushels, impressive!
Thanks, Michelle. Good to know about freezing juice. Pressing is a bit of a workout, but we'll do as much as we can before our arms fall off.Delete
Oh my gosh, that's a lot! One year I had a glut of crabapples and figured apple butter would be the most condensed recipe. Unfortunately, I condensed it too much and it was basically jars of fruit leather. Kind of weird. There are so many of us that would take some if we were nearby, hoping you find some wayward strangers to pass them off to.ReplyDelete
Fruit leather sounds tasty, if chewy.Delete
I would be more than happy to take some of your apples if I lived close by. I put apple sauce in a roasting pan and place in a 200 degree oven overnight wake up to apple butter, when I have too much apple butter I spread it on parchment lined sheet pan, return to 200 degree oven again overnight and wake up to apple leather.ReplyDelete
Those are great ideas, thanks!Delete
Wow! Your apples look wonderful to me. It has been such an amazing apple year for many of us in New England. I've been going crazy trying to use up all the apple harvest. It is sad that we have been conditioned that the perfect apple is blemish free. I would much rather consume pesticide free apples with some peeling and trimming. Dehydrated apples are delicious to snack on and also consider canning apple juice if you have extra jars. I've been peeling and slicing a lot and freezing them in zipper bags for baked goodies too. Even with all this, a lot of the apples are dumped in the woods for the deer and other critters to enjoy.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Rachel. I like the idea of canned apple cider, but I'm guessing you need a pressure canner for that.Delete
Happy to see your wonderful apples. All the best for your achievement and efforts put together to yield wonderful apples...ReplyDelete