RubyFrost Apples For Mid-Season
Look at those pretty apples! These are a new variety, RubyFrost, that was developed in upstate New York at Cornell. We received some at the Test Kitchen and were immediately impressed with their color. They are a small-medium sized apple with a bright red color, a few of them showing a bit of green or yellow blush. They feel very firm to the touch. It is being marketed as a mid-season (mid-winter) apple for the northeast and mid-Atlantic regions and we were interested in seeing what it was like to eat and bake with.
Cutting one open it was immediately apparent that these are crisp textured apples with a fair amount of juice. These are the kinds of apples that make a “snap” when you bite or cut into them. Their flavor, as described by the developer, is indeed sweet and tart. As an added bonus they do not brown quickly. This made us think about setting out a plate of slices – some slathered in peanut butter and some with small wedges of cheddar cheese – while we gathered our thoughts about how to bake with them. These combos were well received and the flesh did stay nice and white, which contrasts nicely against the bright red skin.
We decided to make a Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake. The only bad thing I can report is that these kinds of cakes are hellish to photograph! They have that ultra-rustic, bordering on ugly look, but let me assure you this cake was a hit at a tasting. (Check out the recipe to see our not so pretty but really tasty cake).
The apples peel easily due to their firm texture. We also liked the consistency in size. They held their shape in the cake even though they were baked for over an hour in the batter and as you can see, they developed a very pretty translucent quality.
All in all this is an apple we will look out for in seasons to come. We liked the flavor and texture and the fact that it seems to store well and is available mid-winter means we can be making our favorite pies, cakes and apple breads for more months than before.