This year we’ve had a bumper crop of Bramley cooking apples from the two trees in our garden. Which is great! But the problem were facing is, there are only so many apple crumbles we can make and eat. As I’m big on recycling, there is no way I’m letting the apples go to waste and gentle go rotten in the lawn. We’ve offered apples to both friends and neighbours, but we still have plenty leftover. But is there more to cooking apples than just pies?
Unlike other apples such as Granny Smith’s or Golden Delicious. Bramley apples are classed as cooking apples. Which means they only taste sweet when boiled. If your brave enough to try a raw cooking apple, you’ll soon realise why they are best cooked. They taste pretty disgusting raw.
Current dilemma: I have to many apples to cook with.
Most apple crumbles require three large Bramley apples. An average fallen crop can be 50-200 apples per season. So what to do with the rest?
Preserve and freeze
Bramley apples are not in season for long and it can be hard work peeling those many fallen apples quickly before they go rotten. So I’ve reverted to peeling and chopping most of the apples for the freezer to use at a later date. Frozen fruit will keep for 3-6 months in the freezer. Any longer, it might start to lose its flavour a little. This method works great, as you can simply defrost the apples at your own convenience later on in the year.
Tight on space in your freezer?
Making an apple puree not only makes freezing apples easier to defrost and use at a later date but it will take up less space in the freezer than chunks of frozen apples.
Peel and core apples, then place in a pan with 1cm/½in of water at the bottom. Cover tightly and cook on a medium heat until soft and collapsing. Stir in sugar to taste, or freeze unsweetened. Apple puree works great with yogurt, also try on a roast pork dinner or pulled pork burgers. Yum.
What else can I make with Bramley apples?
There are lots of recipes for Bramley apples from apple sauce to apple cakes. My personal favourite is making homemade Apple wine and Cider.
Cooking apples can be the perfect mix for an apple sauce. Plus it’s so easy to make.
Apple Wine and Cider
Yuck apple wine I hear you cry but honestly it’s one of my favourite homemade recipes. The wine taste is very similar to a Chardonnay, sweet and fruity. As for cider making, it’s so easy and if you can resist. The cider should be ready for drinking by the following summer.