It’s October and that means it’s peak season for apple harvesting. Orchards all around the Ottawa area are open and some of best-tasting apples of the year are ripe for the picking.
Our local Apple orchards offer a ton of fall fun for all ages. Itching for an autumn outing? Take a drive to the orchard where you can pick your own fruit, take a hayride, pet farm animals and enjoy apple baking and cider.
What to Bring
Waterproof boots or shoes—It’s getting chilly and damp out there. If you and your children are going to be running around an apple orchard all afternoon, you’ll want to make sure that you are all wearing comfortable shoes that are waterproof (or at least water-resistant). Turning an ankle or suffering with wet feet is a surefire way to ruin your apple-picking trip.
Your own container/carrying bag – Most orchards will provide you with a paper bag for collecting your apples, but a sturdier (and more eco-friendly) option is to bring a canvas tote from home. You may also want to bring some tea towels or crumpled paper to place throughout your bag as you pick your apples, to prevent bruising.
Water-Even though the temperatures have cooled, it’s still important for you and your kids to stay hydrated while walking around the orchard.
Cash- Depending on how large the operation is, the orchard may not accept personal checks or credit/debit cards. Having plenty of cash on hand ensures that paying for your delicious bounty of apples will be a smooth, painless process.
From the Apple Orchard to Your Kitchen
Apples like cool, humid places. To make them last longer, put them in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator with a wet paper towel. A cool cellar also works, but don’t store apples with potatoes. They cause the apples to ripen too quickly. To keep apples longer, don’t wash them until you are ready to use them.
An apple contains about 80 calories. They are a good source of digestible fiber, vitamins A and C and niacin. They have antioxidant properties thought to be beneficial in fighting cancer and other diseases. “An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away.”
There are thousands of varieties of apples grown around the world, about 100 are grown commercially in Canada and the U.S. Apples were first brought to North America by English settlers along the Eastern Seaboard.
Easy Apple Recipes
One-Bite Apple Muffins
These apple muffins are great for a quick snack attack. Pair them up with a cold glass of milk or a chunk of cheese to fight your hunger pangs.
The apples in this recipe (Crispin, Idared, Spy, Spartan) are great for baking. Other apples, like Gala, Honeycrisp and McIntosh, are perfect for munching fresh.
Nippy Apple Cheddar Soup
Ontario Apples and cheddar cheese have always been a perfect match. Here’s a new twist, a steaming bowl of Apple Cheddar Soup, with just a hint of curry, it will surely hit the spot on a cool fall day.
Apple Cranberry Bread Pudding
Update a classic comfort-food dessert by using Ontario Cranberries instead of raisins. Serve warm with Lemon or Butterscotch Sauce, Ontario Maple Syrup, vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt.
If you do happen to venture out to an orchard this weekend, leave a comment here to let me know how you enjoyed your day. I’d love it if you would share any recipes or tips you have either here or on my facebook page.