Apple Profile

Empire

A delightfully pretty and scrumptious apple!  Crisp and crunchy, Empire has a memorable sweet-tart flavor.  Some people say it has taste hints of pineapple or melon.

In the grocery store, Empires are usually shiny and bright-red over a limey-green background with a creamy white flesh.  It is a superb all-purpose mid-size apple, and fits well in a lunch-box, briefcase or work bag.

Empires are excellent for eating out of hand and in salads, and are good for baking and applesauce.  They store well and are noted for being somewhat resistant to bruising.

A northern native, the Empire apple is a hybrid of the Red Delicious and McIntosh introduced in 1966 by plant breeders in New York, the Empire State.  Very popular with British consumers.

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Recipes

Apple Strudel

Ingredients:

recipe-photo-apple-strudel

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 4 cups thinly sliced, peeled Michigan Empire apples
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans, optional
  • 5 frozen phyllo pastry sheets, thawed
  • butter-flavored vegetable cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup finely crushed vanilla wafers, about 8
  • 1 Tbsp. powdered sugar

In 2-quart saucepan, combine granulated sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon.  Add apples.  Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until mixture boils and thickens, about 5 minutes.  Remove from heat, stir in pecans and cool.

Remove phyllo dough from package and place on dry surface.  Quickly cover with plastic wrap.  Place 1 sheet of the phyllo pastry on dry surface and spray with cooking spray.  Sprinkle with 1 Tbsp. wafer crumbs.  Repeat with 3 sheets phyllo pastry.  Place last sheet phyllo pastry over wafer crumbs.  Coat with cooking spray.  Place apple mixture about 4 inches wide, about 2 inches from edges on short side of pastry.  Roll apples tightly in pastry.  Fold under ends.  Place on baking sheet coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 350ºF about 35 minutes or until deep golden brown.  Cool completely on wire rack.  Serve dusted with powdered sugar.

Harvest Apple Salad

Ingredients:

recipe-photo-harvest-apple-salad

  • 2 cups lettuce mixture
  • 4 slices (2 oz.) reduced-fat turkey breast, cut into strips
  • 1/2 cup thin wedges red Michigan empire apples (about 1/2 medium apple)
  • 1/3 cup red or green seedless grapes
  • 1/4 cup (1 oz.) shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons fat-free ranch dressing

Layer ingredients, except dressing, in order listed.  Toss gently with dressing when ready to serve.