10 October 2011

Cider apple experiment

I don't know what I'm doing wrong with the orchard, but I'm not having a lot of luck with it. Last year we had no fruit and this year the only tree to produce anything was one of the cider apple varieties (Brown's apple). I had about six apples from it, total weight 1 lb 4 oz. Hardly impressive.

And now I had a problem: six apples is hardly enough to make cider from. I could have used them to make apple juice, but at the moment I don't have an apple press of any kind. I couldn't work out whether cider apples are good for anything much else apart from making juice. This post is by way of a public service in case there's anyone else out there wondering the same thing.

I decided to take a chance and turn them into apple strudel. I took the precaution of tasting the raw apple first and it was surprisingly sweet. I'd been expecting them to be more like a Bramley cooking apple than an eating apple and thought I'd have to add a fair bit of sugar to them to compensate. After being cooked in the strudel, they did disintegrate to mush in a way that a Bramley wouldn't - but they tasted very good and I would certainly use them in cooking again.

I still harbour hopes that one day in the future I'll get a crop that's big enough for me to be able to justify the investment in a small cider press, but this year all I have to show from the orchard is this single apple strudel.


Lisa from Iroquois said...

If it's any comfort some years are good for fruit, others are not. Last year we had an abundance of wild grapes and plums. This year there were 3 fruits on the plum bush and the only wild grapes I've seen were in the upper reaches of tree. This year we had edible pears and that's the first time in about 8 years. About 5 years ago we had a great crop of crab apples but I've hardly seen a one since then. Of course if you're into using lots of chemicals I think that might make a big difference with your apples.

Esther Montgomery said...

I have two apples on my tree. They look much better than any other apples the tree has ever produced - big and colourful and beautiful; but only two.

Everyone else's apple tree round here is bowed down by fruit. You can hardly see branches there's so much of it.

It's a swizz!