In Season: Apples

While the weather is cold and the days are short, it is easy to make some less than healthy choices when choosing what food to eat, but healthy food can be comfort food too. It’s easy to grab a biscuit to eat with your cup of tea or coffee, but next time, grab an apple instead. If you are craving something sweet after dinner, eat a sweet, juicy Aussie navel. Breaking the junk food habit can be hard, but if you make a conscience effort to opt for healthier options, not only will you feel better during winter, but your summer clothes will fit you much better too!

Apples are delicious and fresh right now, having not long been picked from the tree. Particularly good varieties include:

Sundowner: Great for baking and a great eating apple, the Sundowner has a dark red skin with white markings (called lenticels) that occur naturally on the skin. They are a sweet, flavoursome apple that tastes great when baked.

Pink Lady: Firm and sweet with a crisp juicy flesh, Pink Lady apples are yummy eaten on their own or in salads, sauces and pies. The Pink Lady apple has a pink blush over a greenish yellow base skin. Known as the Queen of apples, it is a crisp apple with a dense, firm flesh and an almost effervescent flavour. It’s high sugar content makes it great for cooking.

Royal Gala: This medium sized apple has a sweet flavour and is ideal for pies, sauces and salads, as well as being a great size to pop into a childs’ hand or lunch box. The Royal Gala is characterised by a blush of pink on the skin, the colour can vary from yellow to almost orange with deep orange stripes. The Gala is dnese, sweet, aromatic and juicy with a white flesh and is best eaten fresh, added to a salad or used to make a sauce but you’d better be quick as the Royal Gala isn’t available all year round with supplies starting to dwindle around September.

Red Delicious: This medium to large apple has a medium sweetness and crisp white, juicy flesh. It is crimson to dark red in colour and characterised by five distinct crowns on the base. A great apple to eat when you’re not in the mood for a lot of sweetness, it is also often used in desserts.

Fuji: This medium sized apple is great for all those with a sweet tooth as it is sweeter than other varieties. It tastes great on its own, in salads, pies and sauces and it can be frozen! The skin colour of the fuji can vary, but they are most often red/dull pink blush over a greeny/yellow base. This is a big apple with a honey sweet taste. It has a firm texture and is crisp and juicy with a very dense flesh. Widely thought of as the perfect eating apple, the Fuji has a high sugar content which makes it great for cooking as it will retain its shape.

Golden Delicious: This apple is popular in tarts and pies and tastes great when caramelised for cakes and muffins. It has a bright yellow to golden skin colour with the occasional pink tinge. It tastes the best when the skin turns from green to gold. This apple is delicious eaten fresh as it is crisp, sweet and juicy.

Granny Smith: Probably one of the best known varieties of apple, the Granny Smith is a hard apple with a crisp, tart flavour which makes it perfect for baking, freezing, salads, sauces and pies. These apples are one of the best cooking apples with a sensational tart, tangy flavour. When the apple has fully matured, the apple becomes sweeter.

Recipes from here