Photo by Katherine Tallmadge
Honey Crisp Apples from Spring Valley Orchard and Farm
Honey Crisp Apples from Spring Valley Orchard and Farm

The most popular fruit in the United States, apples are a great source of fiber and vitamin C. Apples also contain quercetin, a compound that may help prevent cancer and heart disease, also xeaxanthin, important for eye health. Be sure to eat the peel. The majority of nutrients are in the skin. At the market, choose firm apples with no soft spots or bruises. Be sure to wash apples under clean, running water before eating. (excerpted from the "Fruit and Veggie Glossary" in Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes: 50 New Reasons to Cook in Season!)

 

Apples and their pear cousins are the only locally grown fruit from now until... May or June! But don't despair. Apples are a versatile fruit, come in many shapes, sizes, colors, flavors and textures. They can be eaten "as is" or incorporated into sweet or savory recipes. Think waldorf salad, apple crisp, apple cakes, caramel apples, hard or soft apple cider, Thanksgiving stuffing, German potato salad, applesauce, poached apples in wine sauce. Grate apples into your pancakes, coleslaw, muffins, and loafs. Chop apples and toss them in your tuna or chicken salad. Use apples any time you want an alternative color, texture or flavor in a recipe or menu. You get the idea! My Baked Apples can be eaten as a dessert, a snack, an appetizer, or a satisfying end-of-day refreshment with tea.

 

Katherine's Baked Apples with Roasted Nuts & Dried Fruit

excerpted from "Diet Simple: 195 Mental Tricks, Substitutions, Habits & Inspirations" 

 

 

A traditional yet simple and healthy dessert.

 

4 servings

 

4 large apples

1 C water, sweet white wine or apple juice

8 tsp sugar, brown sugar or maple syrup

1 tsp cinnamon mixed into the sugar (optional)

1/2 C chopped nuts or dried fruit (optional)

 

Peel the top half of the apples and, using a apple corer or melon baller, core the apples. Put about 1” of the water in a baking pan. Place the apples in the pan, blossom end down.  Sprinkle about 1 tsp of the sugar in the cavity of the apple and 1 tsp around the  top. If desired, stuff chopped nuts and/or dried fruit into the cavity.

 

Bake uncovered for about an hour, or until apples are very tender. Cool and serve warm or at room temperature, or refrigerate. Serve with sweet or sour cream or nonfat Greek yogurt.

 

Only about 90 calories each!