Venturing out in the North Country, it’s easy to see the importance of apples to our local culture. It isn’t just the breathtaking fall foliage that makes the Adirondacks one of the most beautiful places to visit during autumn months, but also the lush views of apple orchard after apple orchard.
If Upstate New York had an official local flavor, it just might be apple. Apple pies, homemade applesauce, caramel apples, warm apple cider … these treats can be found in abundance for those of us lucky enough to call the Adirondacks home.
Apples are as important to our economy as they are delicious. New York State’s apple production is ranked #2 in the country. In Clinton County, one of twelve counties located in the Adirondacks, a full thirty percent of the land is dedicated to agriculture, which includes 3,500 apple trees that produce 1.5 million bushels of apples every year. Our biggest export, naturally, is the McIntosh apple, which made its way down from Canada in the early 1800s.
What makes our apple-filled way of life even more romantic is that apples symbolize love. In ancient Greece, apples were associated with Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. The Greeks believed if a man threw an apple to a woman, he was in love with her. If the woman caught it, or attempted to catch it, it meant she felt the same. Apples were also thought to symbolize abundance and fertility, which prompted Greek brides to eat apples on their wedding night for good luck.
Fittingly, the month of October is National Apple Month. To celebrate, we will dedicate the blog to a delicious apple recipe every Wednesday all month long. Here’s what we have planned, in order of appearance: an apple cider signature cocktail, apple cider doughnuts, a super-easy apple crisp, a tasty apple cake, and, finally, apple jelly. Among the five, you’re sure to find something perfect for your wedding reception, engagement party, or perhaps even to pack up for a romantic fall picnic with your betrothed.
Whether you prefer a tasty piece of apple crisp or a sugar-free stroll through an orchard, make sure to take the time to relax and enjoy this lovely seasonal treat with friends and loved ones.
— Story by Heidi LaPoint