10 Surprising Things to Do with Apples
Picture the grocer's display now: A full row of juicy, crisp apples taunting you with their possibilities. Bet you've never put them in pasta or simmered them in soup...until today.
#1: Cook into Pie Pops
Um, adorable. Apple pie is A-OK, but it's got nothing on sucker-style apple pops.
#2: Use in a Pasta Bake
This mac-and-apples-and-cheese bake is crazy good. You wouldn't even be embarrassed to serve it for a fine dinner -- it's that delicious.
#3: Bake into a Cookie
There's one apple in this batch of 36 cookies, but we don't recommend eating the whole tray to get to your apple-a-day quota.
#4: Enjoy with Alcohol
Granny Smiths do the legwork in this crisp granita. Strawberry margaritas regularly get all the glory, but this late entry into the drink arena deserves a look -- or, in this case, a pour.
#5: Puree into Hummus
Apples are regularly the dippers. Turn things upside down by pureeing a sweet apple variety with garbanzo beans for a new way to snack.
#6: Shred into a Breakfast Patty
We've pulled out all the low-fat stops: apples for oil, turkey for ground beef, and spices for add-ins. We tried to keep it to 100 calories, but at 101 we don't think you'll be disappointed.
#7: Simmer into Soup
Midwesterners have already discovered the joys of apple pie with cheddar cheese. Translate the pairing to a creamy soup: Sharp cheddar provides the savory base, a chopped cooking apple serves as the sweet kicker.
#8: Move Apples into the Main Dish
Polish up a Granny Smith for service in a crisp couscous that's made to complement sirloin steak. Hearty, crunchy, sweet, tangy -- yep, you're covered.
#9: Slice onto a Burger
Apples do double duty in this delicious mouthful: A finely chopped apple improves the patty; a sliced apple adds crunch to the stacker.
#10: Bake into Cinnamon Rolls
You already knew that apple and cinnamon were friends; now you know they go great together in homemade breakfast rolls.
Bonus Recipe: Improve Slices as a Snack
You could just cut up apple slices ... or you could cut apple rings, top them with cream cheese, honey, Gorgonzola, and candied walnuts.
Bonus Recipe: Pair with Sausage in a Pasta Dish
Braeburn apples are having a moment alongside salty smoked sausage in this rigatoni dish you can make in 25 minutes.
Bonus Recipe: Bake atop Bread
Apple butter is a common bread spread; here we keep apples in their natural state as a sweet, crumbly topper.
Familiarize yourself with the stars of this show.
1. Golden Delicious: Sweet, firm, and juicy. Good raw or baked.
2. Rome: Crisp, firm, and slightly tart.
Holds its shape well when cooked.
3. Fuji: Crisp and juicy with a mild bite. Tasty when eaten fresh or good in homemade applesauce.
4. Red Delicious: Juicy, slightly tart, with a tough skin. Eat fresh (it breaks down and loses flavor when cooked).
5. Pink Lady Sweet-tart flavor in a firm, crisp package. Great fresh or baked.
6. Granny Smith Crisp and tart. An all-purpose apple especially popular for applesauce and juice.
7. Empire: Very crisp and juicy with a sweet-tart finish. Eat fresh or use in cider. Loses its texture in pie and applesauce.