My appreciation for apples is deep rooted. After all, they are the universal symbol for teachers, New York, AND for health. As a NY health teacher, it seemed like an obvious choice for my logo here at Peeled.
While most people think of New York City when they link NY to ‘the big apple’, as upstate New Yorker I think we deserve an entirely different apple reputation. People have a tendency to picture the hustle and bustle of the big city when they picture NY, but my NY is a much more serene landscape… especially come fall time. Upstate NY is chuck full of apple orchards, I have 3 within an hour’s drive from my house. While apple picking may be a stereotypical ‘fall activity’, we take a lot of pride in our apples around here.
Like most orchards in our area, we started out on a wagon ride to get to the area that was being picked that weekend. It was about a 10 minute bumpy ride, but it was so beautiful to ride through the farm land when all the leaves were changing. I had to fight an inner battle between capturing it in pictures and disconnecting to just live in the moment.
I was ecstatic when I found out they were picking Empire apples that weekend, and not only because it keeps with my NY theme. My favorite apples are easily McIntosh, Empire, and Cortland (ironically also my alma mater- go red dragons). They were also picking Red Delicious at that time, which made it an easy choice because, well- who actually likes Red Delicious. More like Red Disgusting, AmIRight?
This year was an especially fun apple picking trip because I finally convinced my hubby-to-be to come along for the adventure. He’s usually not the type to engage in instagram-worthy activities. He was being kind and obliging me by going, but I think he ended up enjoying himself. On his guard, only the most perfect apples were allowed entry into our bag. Its hard to kill a competitive spirit.
We may have gotten slightly carried away, and I also may have to turn myself in for being an apple hoarder.
This orchard also had pumpkins for picking. Unfortunately, all the good ones were already picked in our area- so we opted for the pre-picked pumpkin section at the farm store. Another delightful experience via the farm store- cider slushies! I’m not typically a slushy gal, but I do like my cider over a giant glass of ice…so it just seemed like no-brainer. It was worth the hype.
So now we have a 20 lb sack of apples.
Like I said, we may have gotten carried away. I’ve always eaten an apple with my lunch- I like to think it cleanses my teeth and mouth. Outside of that, apples are one of the best fruits you can eat because of the fiber content. Fiber is not digested inside our bodies, so it’s great for fighting off hunger by keeping you feeling full. Make sure you eat the skin- that’s where many of the nutrients live.
Outside of eating apples whole, I’ve found my next-best apple recipe is hardly a recipe at all. I’m channeling my inner elementary school heat-lamp cafeteria treat… warm apple slices. I simply slice an apple, toss it with a little cinnamon and sugar, and top with some oats. Pop it in the microwave for a few minutes and I’m reliving my childhood lunch line favorite. Pictures coming soon!