Apples can be as small as a cherry or as large as a grapefruit. Some varieties have an aftertaste of pears, citrus, cinnamon, cloves, coconut, strawberries, grapes, and even pineapple. Have you ever tried adding a thin slice of apple in your turkey sandwich? It's really good. Experiment with different varieties and find a few that you like. The crisp texture and refreshing flavor makes apples a great snack. Of the hundreds of apple varieties, the top five grown in the US in 2009 were:
- Red Delicious
- Golden Delicious
- Granny Smith
"An apple a day can keep the doctor away."
Apples have no fat, cholesterol or sodium, and contain small amounts of potassium, which makes them great for heart health, maintaining healthy weight, and maintains healthy blood pressure. Cornell University food scientists say apples can also assist in the treatment of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Studies show the chemical quercetin appears to protect rat brain cells when assaulted by oxidative stress in laboratory tests.
Wash apples in cold water and they're ready to eat. Eat them whole or try some of these ideas for different ways to enjoy apples.
1. Quartered in smoothies.
2. Caramel apples - try topping with nuts or granola for variety.
3. Chopped with raisins in rice pilaf - melt butter and sauté onion and apples. Add enough apple juice to boil rice. Cook rice in mixture. Let stand for 5 minutes and stir in toasted almonds.
4. Diced in chicken or tuna salad.
5. Diced in potato salad - add diced potatoes to boiling water until potatoes are soft -- approximately 10 minutes, drain. Add finely minced red onions, garlic, diced ripe avocados 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, 1 minced jalapeno, finely chopped cilantro.
6. Diced on top of hot cereal.
7. Eat right out of the hand.
8. Grated in meatloaf or meatballs.
9. Grated on a grilled cheese sandwich.
10. Grated in a peanut butter sandwich.
11. Shredded in pancake/waffle batter.
12. Diced in skillet apple-granola crisp - toast granola with butter, 2 tablespoons flour, 1 tbsp sugar, 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice, and 1 tbsp lemon juice.
13. Sliced with low fat cheese and crackers.
14. Sliced in fruit salad - Slice fruit across the short side and on an angle. Add bananas, strawberries, pears, and apples.
15. Sliced in sandwiches - add to meat, poultry, or cheese sandwiches.
16. Sliced with peanut butter.
17. Sliced or diced on top of pancakes or waffles.
18. Stuffed with peanut butter - slice apple in half, scoop out the core, stuff with peanut butter.
Prevent apples from turning brown
Add a lemon juice and water mixture to sliced apples to prevent them from turning brown. Use this mixture whenever you use uncooked apples in a side dish or have them on a sandwich.
Davee Kaplan loves to cook, write, make smoothies and juices, critique restaurants, indoor garden and dance. Her food blog at [http://www.EatAndDance.com] was started to write about healthy eating from a dancer's perspective. Davee is a world champion Salsa dancer and has been dancing for over 20 years. Follow her through EatAndDance on Facebook and Twitter.
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