Sunday, November 15, 2009

Apple Season

Last year I pretty much succeed in not eating any fruit other than local apples (I think I broke down and had some in season in Florida organic pink Grapefruit in February - maybe 2) all winter long and I am going to try and repeat myself this year.

It actually wasn't a problem for me, I like apples and the thought of eating a sub par out of season Cantaloupe from Chile or some overpriced raspberries from New Zealand somehow never crossed my mind.

A couple of weeks ago the Sunday New York Times Magazine did an exhaustive article on this study being done on reduced calorie diets. The thing that caught my eye (well initially Neil's as he was the one who sent me the article) was how apples apparently are a particularly satisfying snack:

By building a diet around foods with a low-energy density, especially vegetables, fruits and soups, participants can conceivably ingest the same weight of food as they might on a regular diet while taking in fewer calories.Apples are superb in this regard. At the medical centers running Calerie, you see a lot of people walking around eating apples. Even subjects who disliked apples have discovered that calorie restriction, which generally has the effect of making food taste better, has given them a surprising desire for the fruit.

Then today I see on Treehugger that Australian scientists have come up with an apple that takes a long time to rot, er, or as they would rather spin it, stays fresher longer (sounds like the tag line for a room deodorizer) 4 months to be exact. It's no surprise I agree with the conclusion the author of the article Colin Dunn comes to:

Food is supposed to rot, and while way too much food is wasted around the world, the solution is not to engineer perishables to last longer; the solution is to create stronger local food systems that emphasize sustainable production and seasonal cycles. So, with all due respect to the RS103-130, we'll be sticking with the good old-fashioned Macintosh, Fuji, and other nature-designed apples. Meanwhile, the Queensland government is seeking a commercial supply partner to distribute the fruit and hopes to begin selling it next year.

This past spring a farmer told me not to buy a Macintosh because they are a softer apple and don't winter as well as say the Mutsu, the best time to eat Macintosh is now. They also make kick ass apple sauce because they melt down so well when cooked and have a wonderful sweet tart balance (try using maple syrup to sweeten your sauce,it tastes great and if you live in NYC it's a local product).

So go out and get yourself some apples, the selection available at the green market is vast - enough to keep you busy all winter long!

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