Oak & Acorn: Everything’s Coming up Apples!

Apple Season in New England

There are so many ways in cooking and baking with apples. You can make pies, jellies, cakes, donuts, apple cider and even use them in savory treats.

It’s September in New England and almost autumn which means one of many things, it’s apple season time! For many of us in New England, once we start to see those “pick your own apple” signs, it means a new season of change is coming. In fact, September 22 is the official Autumnal equinox. The full moon this month is so close to the Autumnal equinox that is actually called the Harvest Moon. The Harvest moon gives so much light that it’s said that farmers coined the term because so much extra light was given during this time that farmers had more hours in their day to harvest crops.

When I was a kid growing up in the South, I was one of those people who dreamed of autumn in New England. Any time, I would see a painting or a photograph, it seemed all so dreamy to me… and now here I am living in small town New England with my wonderful six year old! 

One of the things I love about family, is building traditions or rituals we always know are a part of us and something to look forward to. One of our autumn traditions is to go apple picking. We are surrounded by many apple orchards, many which are family run and have long been. It’s easy to always go back to a favorite orchard but also hard to resist not trying out a new one. There are over 100 varieties of apples that are grown in New England—I’ve lost count of the different ones that I’ve tasted. You read about apple orchards different families recommend and look up local farms on CISA, pick up some from the farmers’ markets or even just go for a drive and most likely you will find a sign pointing directions to a pick your own farm.

This weekend I did a little apple picking with my daughter, Thu, and we made a very simple apple cake. It’s really easy to make with kids and taste so great! If you are like me and cautious of the kind of sweets you give to your kids, this one is great and much healthier than most. Thu loved making this recipe and it’s really easy to follow. Only problem is that it goes quickly!  Consider making two and gifting one to your elderly neighbor or your local librarian!

I would certainly encourage anyone to go out and pick some apples while they are in season. The recipe calls for a applesauce, which is very easy to make. It’s better to not add anything to the applesauce you make for this cake, since you’ll be adding ingredients which will add flavor. To make enough applesauce for this recipe, just boil down about 6 apples and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, then mash them. It’s up to your whether you want peels or not.

Apple Cake

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup homemade applesauce.

1 1/2 cups of oat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix wet ingredients in one bowl and dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then combine. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, then you are done! Try it.. you’ll love it!

Originally published: Sept 2013


Leslie Lynn Lucio
Leslie Lynn LucioLeslie is from Texas but has always been drawn to New England. She lives in the town of Northampton and loves living in Western Massachusetts. She spends a lot of time with her five year old and connecting with the community. Her interest include cooking, DIY projects,writing, biking, being outdoors, photography, restoration, food preservation and social activism. She spends some of her time farming when she can and also you can spot her working with the Pedal People.




One Comment on “Oak & Acorn: Everything’s Coming up Apples!

  1. New Englanders often take it for granted that we can enjoy our own fresh picked apples year after year! There really are many farms to choose from, just be sure to call ahead to make sure that your favorite variety is available!

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