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Apple Pie

Jenny02's picture

Apple Pie  (post #68896)


What is the best type of apple to use for an apple pie?

Pielove's picture

Hi Jenny0! I prefer to use a (post #68896, reply #1 of 11)

Hi Jenny0! I prefer to use a mix of apples, as that will give you a good balance of flavors and textures. Also, it depends what you like and what you have available in the market. Here is my opinion:

1. Never use: Red delicious
2. Use a few acidic apples (like Granny Smith) to perk up the flavors.
3. Some apples will have a firm texture once cooked. If you like that, use many or most of these. For example, Golden Delicious.
4. Some apples will have a more "saucy" texture. A few of these mixed in are good. For example, Macintosh.
5. Other favorite pie apples are Jonagold and Empire.
6. If you can get really good heirloom apples, such as Northern Spy or Winesap, use them and forget the supermarket stuff.
7. Don't sweat the apple choice too much-- after all, it is PIE and will be yummy and well-appreciated. Also, you will need to experiment to find a combination that is to your taste and works with what is available in your region of time and space. Just stay away from the red delicious and you will have a hard time going wrong.

Enjoy and report back on your findings!


Astrid's picture

Red delicious make a pretty (post #68896, reply #2 of 11)

Red delicious make a pretty nice fine textured apple sauce, if there isn't anything else available. They are best used while fresh. The skin adds some nice color, too. Adding lemon juice, honey,etc. helps also.

New Mexico home organic gardener Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson
Gretchen's picture

I absolutely have to say, (post #68896, reply #3 of 11)

I absolutely have to say, with all due respect to Astrid, in case anyone doesn't know about red delicious, they have zero flavor, are mealy, and have become a worthless apple.
I am really sorry Astrid, and certainly do not mean this in any way personally--but it would have to be on a desert island where they washed up and not another thing was available to cook.They are tasteless, even when fresh--and NC grows some. I honestly don't know how they can be that tasteless!! There are so many nice apples available now.

wonka's picture

Very occasionally I have (post #68896, reply #4 of 11)

Very occasionally I have found a red delicious that is crisp, juicy and has nice flavour. Perhaps Astrid has had better luck finding the good ones than you have. : )

Gretchen's picture

I never chance it!! I am sure (post #68896, reply #5 of 11)

I never chance it!! I am sure Harry and David might be able to come up with one. ;o)
The doctors' lounge at the hospital had a fruit bowl for the doctors and I even fussed at DH for bringing home a free one. Talk about looking the gift horse in the mouth!!
But if others like them, I am fine with that, needless to say. I love it when I can go to the market and find some of the older or more diverse varieties. We aren't lucky enough to have any heirloom varieties but I think growers are trying to find and cultivate these also.

wonka's picture

I rarely buy the red (post #68896, reply #7 of 11)

I rarely buy the red delicious, but when apples are at their freshest, I have had some good ones. My favourite apple to eat is still a Honeycrisp, and like you, I love the farmers market in the fall so that I can try all sorts of different apples that you don't find in the supermarkets. I've had some amazing desserts made from apples that I have bought from the farmers.

Pielove's picture

I love the apples from the (post #68896, reply #8 of 11)

I love the apples from the farmers market too-- so what do you prefer for cooked apples? (pie or sauce).


Gretchen's picture

I know a lot of people don't (post #68896, reply #9 of 11)

I know a lot of people don't care for McIntosh apples, but I love them and have made sauce occasonally. I think Romes and Staymans are good for baking. We have been eating honeycrisp, galas, and fujis of late. The Arkansas blacks are interesting. And I also like golden delicious a lot for pies (tarte tatin) and eating out of hand.

This link is to a morning talk show on our NPR station, and today's was about heirloom apples.

wonka's picture

For sauce I like the macs. (post #68896, reply #10 of 11)

For sauce I like the macs. For pies and desserts I had to check out this site because I'm terrible at remembering names. I usually just ask the farmers for recommendations and use those (completely forgetting their names of course LOL) I do remember a few that I have used and like: Cox Orange Pippin, Cortlands and Grevenstein.

Pielove's picture

Interesting, I bet you are (post #68896, reply #6 of 11)

Interesting, I bet you are right. Probably there are big differences in how apples taste, depending on where they are grown. Honestly, I have not tried that many red delicious to really rule them out.


Pielove's picture

Sometimes the best apple pie (post #68896, reply #11 of 11)

Sometimes the best apple pie is made with whatever apples you have on hand. Here is my "clean out the 'fridge" apple pie with Northern Spy, Jonagold, and a few unidentified dregs from fall apple-picking. Dang, if this forum was in smell-O-vision, it would really be something-- I used the Apple Pie Spice mix from the Spice House, wow. The worst part is that I have to wait until dinnertime to cut into this beauty.

So, this is a test of whether I can post photos-- can you see it?

Top with image tags and photo's url from flickr:

or this (html from flickr)