Inventory, 12 lbs : 0
This item was last sold on : 01/08/16
Crab apples are distinguished by their less-than-golf ball size and their tart, bitter flesh. Coloring varies depending on variety but expect variances of red, ruby, pink and gold with apple stems as long as the length of the fruit itself. The two general attributes all Crab apple varieties share is their petite ornamental size and their high acid content. Crab apples' flesh is ivory to creamy, semi-starchy and considered inedible raw. Dark seeds fill the Crab apple core, leaving very little flesh available for culinary use.
Crab apples are available mid-winter until spring.
Crab apple, of the Malus species, is a general name given to over a hundred different varieties of Crab apples, each possessing their own independent qualities and sometimes deficits. Many Crab apple varieties have evolved from other Crab apples while several varieties have lost relevance and exposure due to lack of disease resistance or prolificity. Hybridized Crab apple varieties should be distinguished from original Crab apples as these were developed to actually be eaten out of hand, whereas original Crab apple varieties are suitable for processing and cooking. The modern standard that fruit must ship well and meet the flavor requirements of a fresh-eating apple create obstacles for the Crab apple's commercial presence as it has evolved for centuries as a true cider apple variety.
Because of their high-acid content, Crab apples will display their best culinary virtues in processed form. They are utilized for juicing and fermenting, creating both fresh and alcoholic-based ciders. The juice of Crab apples can be used in many applications for recipes both savory and sweet. Apple ciders can be reduced for sauces, purées, glazes and utilized to enhance pork tenderloins, chicken sausages, sponge cakes, tarts and crumbles. Fermented crab apple ciders can be utilized in batters for seafood such as oysters, mussels and shrimp and fried vegetables. Hard Crab apple ciders can also be served as pairings with fresh and aged cheeses and charcuterie.
The size of the Crab apple is evidence of its historical horticultural presence. Often, fruit that is or was once small, is proven to be the parent of modern fruits (case in point: wild melons and squash were once so small they were deemed inedible or only used for their seeds. The Crab apple is considered the parent of all apple varieties. It has been found growing wild for thousands of years throughout the Northern, Eastern and Western hemispheres. Newer varieties were developed from Crab apple heritage to make the apples larger and essentially, more edible. Crab apple trees flower and fruit best in full sun, though they can tolerate light shade. Once established, they can also withstand moderate drought conditions. Contrastly, overly moist conditions promote disease incidence.
Restaurants currently purchasing this product as an ingredient for their menu.
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Recipes that include Crab Apples. One is easiest, three is harder.
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