Depending on where you're at in the country, most everyone should be coming up on apple season. If you're lucky enough to live near an apple orchard then you know the memories and special times that can be had from an annual trip to pick apples. We've been picking apples at several different orchards in Indianapolis since we moved here almost seven years ago. Wheter you have an orchard near you or not, here's a few fun things to do with apples now that fall is well on its way.
If you do have an orchard near you, host an apple taste testing event after dinner. After school, go pick one of each kind of apple available, keep them labeled and then try each one and rate them on cripliness, sweetness, tartness or whatever else you feel makes a good apple. Maybe you'll find some new favorites, or perhaps one that isn't your favorite at all. Honeycrisp apples right off the tree are one of the best things about fall.
PIE! Apple pie can be as easy or as complicated as you want to make it. If you're not into making your own crust, buy one. If you love the challenge pie crust presents? Take this opportunity to teach your kids about patience and preparation. Kids love helping, even if it's something they don't think they'll like. Even better is they're a lot more willing to try something they made with you. (In case you're wondering, "WHAT HUMAN DOESN'T LIKE APPLE PIE?" My kids. My kids do not like pie.)
Ever tried making your own applesauce? It's a pretty easy and gratifying process. You can make it exactly how you like it, or make a few different types to appeal to the different tastes in your family. If canning is something your family is into now is a good time to gather in the kitchen and prepare for fall.
Often each orchard has its own special treats available in addition to apples, sometimes it's caramel, other times apple slushes or cider and if you're lucky — apple donuts or dumplings. Make these treats part of your annual apple tradition and your kids will look foward to fall getting started and cooler weather coming.
What's your favorite way to use apples in fall?