One of the most popular tart apples, Granny Smiths are crisp and quite sour. They’re a good all-purpose cooking apple, and their flavor is enhanced when paired with sweeter, spicier apples in pies and crisps.
Red Delicious and Gala are two apples that won’t withstand cooking temperatures and should not be used for apple pie. Many new apple varieties, including Honeycrisp, have a flesh that fractures when you bite it. This is so appealing for snacking on an apple, but not the best feature for a good apple pie apple.
Gala. With a crisp bite and a mellow sweetness, the Gala complements any recipe—you can even get away with using less sugar because of its natural sweetness. The crispness helps it retain its shape throughout baking so it doesn’t get mealy.
Avoid these: McIntosh, Gala, Fuji or Red Delicious. These apples are a little too soft or just don’t have the right flavor punch for the long baking time pies and tarts require.
To avoid a mushy apple pie, you’ll need a mix of what Amy calls firm-tart and firm-sweet apple varieties. All baking apples should be firm so the fruit will hold its shape throughout the cooking process, and a combination of tart and sweet varieties will give your apple pie the best flavor.
Macintosh or Granny Smith apples are the best choices for apple pie because they are the least mushy apples.
The best apples to use for whole baked apples are firm and perfectly round. I usually use Granny Smith, Fuji, Pink Lady, or Honeycrisp. Select apples that stand up straight because you don’t want them to topple over in the oven.
The reason has everything to do with what kind of apple is used. For instance, the Lobo is renowned for keeping its shape during cooking. Not too sweet and slightly acidic, it’s perfect for baking pies and crumbles that look like they belong in a bakery shop window!
apples. Honeycrisp and Braeburn apples won our taste test for best-in-pie, since they have a just-right balance of sweet and tart flavor and hold their shape nicely as they bake. Mixing the two gives you the most complex flavor; Golden Delicious work, too, if they’re all you can find.
Don’t cook them. Just keep them in cold water to keep them from browning until it’s time to assemble the pie. Coat the raw apples with sugar and flour and pour them into the crust.
Heart-shaped, with a distinctive yellowish-orange skin marked by red stripes, Gala has a sweet taste that is beyond comparison. It also works great in salads. Fuji: The crispy, juicy Fuji varies in colour from yellow to green to red. Its spicy, sweet flavour makes it excellent for salads or eating out of hand.
Gala: If you want extra sweetness without the soft texture, choose Gala apples for your pie. As with Golden Delicious apples, bakers sometimes reduce the sugar in their recipes due to this variety’s extra-sweet flavor.
Eating apples can easily be used in pies or for other cooking, but cooks should lower the amount of any added sugar, as the apples will make up for it. People who want to baked eating apples should choose those that will retain their shape when cooked.
Gala. A crisp, sweet apple with a mild flavor, Galas have yellow-orange skin with red striping. They’re among the best apples for applesauce, salads, eating out-of-hand, and pressing into cider.
Several apple varieties can be substituted for McIntosh apples in baking. Cortland apples are a sweet and tart variety with a similar texture and are usually the closest substitute. Many all-purpose apples provide similar results. However, no varieties taste quite the same as a fresh McIntosh apple.
If the recipe calls for 6 cups of sliced apples, you’ll likely need about 8 medium-sized apples, or about 2 pounds of medium-sized apples.
Pectin is the biological glue that holds together plant cells, giving fruits and vegetables their shape and structure. When apples are cooked, this pectin breaks down, and the apples turn mushy.
The firm and crisp Granny Smith and Honeycrisp varieties are popular apples to use in apple pies and apple crisps. Golden Delicious is another great choice for a crisp. You can use just one variety or, for added depth of flavor, use an assortment of varieties when baking your apple crisp.
“You want a large, firm, crisp apple for baking,” like Crispin, Fuji, Braeburn, Cameo, Red Delicious, and Ralls Janet that go well in pies, in baking, or apple sauce, Brannen says. And as for salads, Brannen recommends fresh Cripps Pink and Honey Crisp.
A medium sized apple that has a distinctive greenish yellow to golden brown skin color. The flesh is firm and cream colored providing a sweet juicy flavor. This apple is a good selection for drying, for baking, and for making cider.
McIntosh is an apple that has been loved since John McIntosh discovered seedlings in Ontario in 1811. … It’s worth the wait, though—this apple is tart and juicy-crisp, with finely textured flesh that holds its shape well, perfect for pie and other baking uses. Pink Lady apples hold their shape and flavor well for baking.
4. In Baking – We wouldn’t use mealy apples for something like apple pie, but they can make a great addition to muffins, scones, and pancakes.
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