May 3, 2011 by
With the recent Royal Wedding it seems a fitting occasion to shine the spotlight on the majestic Red Prince apple. What differentiates this apple from others harvested in the fall, is that it continues to improve with age while other varieties tend to decline. In fact, the Red Prince apple is reputed to be rather tart when first picked. But after being cellared for several months it develops a robust, tangy-sweet flavour while maintaining a surprising crunch and juiciness. This delightful apple is considered to be at its peak throughout the winter months until early summer. And the added good news is that it is available locally through Martin’s Family Fruit Farm!
The Red Prince is not genetically modified but rather is a natural cross between two apples, the Golden Delicious and the Red Jonathan. It has inherited the best properties of both: it is sweet and juicy like the Golden Delicious and is wonderfully crisp and tangy like the Jonathan. It is ideal for eating fresh and pairs beautifully with sharp cheddars and blue cheeses, but works equally well in salads and baking.
Red Prince apples are grown exclusively in Thornbury, Ontario. Martin’s Family Fruit Farm in Waterloo carries the distinction of being the exclusive distributer of the Red Prince in this area and the largest packer of Red Prince apples in Canada. The Martin’s Family Fruit Farm family business was established in the 1970s when founder Leighton Martin, planted the company’s first one hundred apple trees. Still run and operated by members of the Martin’s family, today the company has since grown to encompass 700 acres of orchard land in Ontario (Leamington and Vienna) where many varieties of apples including McIntosh, Gala, Golden Delicious and Fuji are grown.
After being harvested in the fall, the Red Prince apples are stored for several months in controlled atmosphere storage (CA), which allows them to fully develop their flavour profile and signature crunchy texture. Controlled atmosphere storage is a non-chemical process that involves the careful control of temperature, oxygen, carbon dioxide and humidity to achieve apples of the highest quality. The apples maintain their rich red skin colour on the outside and crisp, white flesh on the inside.
Be sure to visit Martin’s at the St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market or drop by their retail store on Lobsinger Line in Waterloo. You will also find Red Prince apples in many retail outlets and grocery stores throughout the region. This is the perfect time to bite into a Red Prince apple. Isn’t it nice to know that some things actually improve with age?
For more information and delicious recipes visit http://www.redprinceapple.ca/
My top choice!