English Apples are now in season and Green Pastures Farm Shop is bursting with apples from Norfolk, Suffolk and beyond!
Whilst we all take it for granted that we can buy apples all year round these days there’s nothing quite like the flavour of a freshly picked new season’s apple. The last few days has seen a great influx of varieties into the farm shop as they’ve come into season, each with their own distinctive flavours and qualities.
Topping the apple charts this week is the Early Windsor with its crisp juicy flesh and a delicious flavour reminiscent of honey. Our Early Windsors are grown in Suffolk, just a short drive away to ensure we can enjoy regular deliveries of freshly picked apples.
Cox’s Orange Pippin has, until recently, always been the country’s overall best-selling apple, and I have to agree that it’s my favourite too on account of its fine, complex flavour. We’ve started to see the season’s first Cox’s ripen and appear on the market in the last few days.
Chef’s Apple Advice
We asked Wayne, our Head Chef in our Gardeners Kitchen restaurant for his tips and recommendations for cooking with apples and he revealed a few surprises!
Cooking Apples Not Always Best for Cooking!
Whilst the Bramley is “Britain’s Top Cooker” Wayne recommends other, crisper apples for certain dishes. “I like my apple tarts to have a crunch” he explains, “So a firmer “pastry apple” such as Golden Delicious is required.”
Wayne’s “Killer Crumble”
Even the Apple Crumble gets a spot of star treatment from Wayne. “I like to combine a soft cooking variety such as Bramley with a firmer Granny Smith to give a variety of textures to my crumbles,” says Wayne who also has a special recommendation for the topping. “My crumble toppings include ground and flaked almonds for a little more flavour and some brown sugar for some extra colour.”
Wayne’s Top 5 Apple Dishes
- Apple, blackberry and elderflower fool
- Poached apple filled with crème patisserie with puff pastry, mille feuille & vanilla mascarpone
- Calvados panna cotta with apple crisps, apple gel and blackcurrant puree
- Apple spring roll with almond crumble and apple sour cream
- Golden Delicious apple crumble with pistachio brittle and brown sugar crumble
More Top Apple Tips from the Gardeners Kitchen
- French Tarragon, with its aniseed like flavour, pairs really well with apple
- For the ultimate homemade apple sauce, combine a little apple cyder, lime juice, cinnamon, cloves and basil with cooked Bramley apples
- For a super salad, use a crisp red apple such as Braeburn, along with Roquefort, red chard, focaccia croutons and cyder vinegar dressing