Apples are one of the most popular fruits in the United States. There are over 2,500 varieties grown each year. Apples can be enjoyed raw or cooked. They can also be added to a variety of sweet or savory recipes. Apples can add a natural sweetness to any meal or be a perfect on-the-go snack. Apples are rich in many vitamins and minerals that our bodies need to stay healthy.
- Look for apples that do not have bruises. Be gentle while handling them to prevent bruising.
- You can buy certain varieties of apples year- round. In Mississippi, they are in season between June and October.
- Apples are at their best quality and the cheapest to buy when they are in season.
- Apples that grow well in Mississippi include Smoothee, Gala, Mollies Delicious, Ozark Gold, Red Chief, Arkansas Black, Granny Smith, Fuji, Golden Dorsett, Anna, and Ein Shiemer.
- Wash apples under cool water before using.
- Many vitamins and minerals are found in the apple’s skin. Leave the skin on to boost the nutritional value.
- Apples can be bought canned and packed in water. Buying these could save time when making your own applesauce.
- To make your own applesauce, heat apples in a saucepan with a little water until fork tender.
- Then mash to desired consistency with a fork or potato masher.
- Apples should be stored in the refrigerator for peak flavor and crispness. They can last up to 7 weeks.
- Cut apples should also be stored in the refrigerator. To prevent browning, apply a mixture of water and lemon juice.
- Apples can be kept at room temperature but need to be eaten within a few days.
FUN WITH FOOD
CHILDREN CAN HELP
- Children can select their favorite variety of apples at the store.
- They can help wash apples before using.
- For a quick and easy snack, children can spread peanut butter or low-fat yogurt on sliced apples.
- 2 medium apples, washed, with the cores removed
- 2 tablespoons raisins
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons softened butter
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, optional
- Wash your hands well with soap and warm water for 20 seconds.
- Wash apples, cut in half, and remove core with a spoon.
- Place the apples in a microwave-safe container.
- Put the brown sugar and butter in a small bowl.
- Stir together. Stir in raisins. Add the cinnamon (optional). Stir gently to mix the ingredients together.
- Use a spoon to fill the center of each apple with the raisin mixture.
- Cover the apples with plastic wrap. Turn back one corner to let the steam out.
- Put the covered container in the microwave.
- Microwave on high for 4 to 5 minutes or until the apples are tender.
- Remove the container from the microwave. Let it stand on the counter for 1 minute.
- Carefully remove the plastic wrap. Let the apples cool.
- Use a spoon to put any juices left in the cooking bowl over the apples.
- Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours.
To learn more about storing or cutting apples, click on Tips and Videos.
Publication 3622 (POD-08-21)
By Kelli Whitten, Mississippi State University Extension Service.
This material was funded by USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - SNAP. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
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