Apples


Apples -

This well-known fruit has been much improved by cultivation from its original wild state, which is still seen in the crab apple - a small, acid, almost uneatable fruit, and yet the parent of the 1,500 varieties now used in so many ways - for eating raw, in cooking and preserving, for jellies and desserts, for cider and vinegar, etc. The cultivated tree is at its prime when about fifty years old and will bear fruit for more than a hundred years.

The apple contains an abundance of potassium and sodium salts and its acids are thought to be of great benefit to persons of sedentary habits. A ripe raw apple digests in eighty-five minutes. The practice of serving apple-sauce with roast pork, rich goose and similar dishes is based on scientific reasons.

The different varieties vary widely in taste, appearance and time of ripening.

The Early Harvest, a small yellow sweetish type, is one of the first to make its appearance, ushering in what are commonly known as the "summer apples." Of these, the leading varieties are the Highglow, very handsome and fine-flavored, the Sourbough and the Gravenstein - the last-named generally rather large, roundish but somewhat irregular in shape and in color greenish to orange yellow, striped or mottled with red. Of smaller size but of attractive red skin and tender, juicy, sub-acid flesh is the June, very popular in the West and South.

Next come the "Fall apples," the best of which are: the Maiden Blush, medium to large in size, oblate and regular in shape, and in color yellow with crimson blush; the Belleflower; several varieties of the Holland Pippin, of good keeping quality, medium size, flattish in shape and yellow in color - inclining sometimes to green, and occasionally to red; the Fall Pippin, large, round and yellow, and the Strawberry Pippin.

Of the "Winter apples," the leading varieties are the Greening, Baldwin, Northern Spy, Spitzenburg, Seek-no-further, Lady Sweet, Gill Flower or Sheep's-nose, Green Sweet, Swaar, Streaked Pippin, Russet, Newton Pippin, etc. More Greenings are sold than of any other winter type, it being the general family apple, both raw and cooked. When first gathered in the fall it is of bright green color, but this gradually changes to a rich mature yellow. The Baldwins are comparatively inferior, generally of a dry, insipid flavor, but they are largely bought because they are sound and fine looking, frequently presenting a better appearance than really superior apples. The Northern Spy and Spitzenburg are generally considered the highest types of the "Baldwin" class of apple - good specimens are handsomely colored and excellent in flavor and quality. The Spitzenburg is of deep rich yellow, nearly covered with bright red, with darker red stripes. The Northern Spy is of similar colors but generally shows more yellow. The "Seek-no-further" is usually of deep yellow, but some varieties are bright red. The Lady Sweet or Pommeroy, one of the most desirable of "sweet apples" for general market purposes, is of fine red and yellow color, good shape and flavor and excellent keeping qualities. The Gill Flower is commonly called the Sheep's-nose from its peculiar pointed shape. The Green Sweet is a crisp, brittle, juicy fruit, and one of the best late-keeping sweet apples. The Swaar, generally of greenish or yellow color effect, is not attractive in appearance but it is noted as a fine dessert fruit. The Streaked Pippin is a large fruit of mixed red and yellow color, of good edible and cooking qualities. The Russet is the latest comer and the hardiest and is usually kept until the other varieties are beginning to disappear. The Newton or Golden Pippin is now raised chiefly for export to Europe, where it is much esteemed.

Another beautiful and delicious fruit is the Rennet, of regular shape, skin of rusty tinge and flesh of sweet acid and delicately aromatic flavor. It is not, though, a good keeping apple.

The care of apples is simple but exact. They should be kept dry and cool - the colder the better, short of freezing - and all bruised or decaying fruit must be removed at once from contact with sound fruit, as otherwise the trouble will speedily spread to an alarming extent.

The packing of apples is changing. The barrel is being superseded by the box - which is a great deal better suited to the retail trade. In the Northwestern and Pacific States it is employed exclusively. The box most commonly used measures inside 9 3/4 inches high, by 10 3/4 inches wide and about 20 3/4 inches long, and holds about one bushel, or nearly fifty pounds of fruit, varying slightly according to the variety.

When the box package is used, the fruit should be carefully graded to uniform size and packed in layers. If wrapped in paper, similar to that used for oranges, a higher price can be obtained than for unwrapped fruit. A fancy display label bearing the title of the fruit and the name of the grower or dealer should be prominently displayed on each box.


Arround Apples in The Grocer's Encyclopedia


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