Apple Varieties and their purpose.


CORTLAND: This hybrid is ideal for snacks and salads, as its flesh, when sliced, is slower to turn brown than any other variety.

GOLDEN DELICIOUS: One of the best eating apples around, they’re also recommended for salads, baking, pies and sauces.

McINTOSH: More people bite into Macs than any other apple. Originated in eastern Ontario almost 200 years ago. Available early September.

EMPIRE: An eating apple that is also perfect in sauces. A cross between Red Delicious and McIntosh. Available early October.

CRISPIN/MUTSU: Some cooks swear it makes the best pies, but this Japanese variety is also a great snaking apple.

RED DELICIOUS: A crunch, sweet apple, wonderful fresh off the tree or in salads, although rarely recommended for cooking.

IDARED: A traditional variety used for baking and sauces. Tart when picked, but mellows over time. Best eaten after Christmas.

NORTHERN SPY: Delicious in sauces and pies. Not as common as it once was.

RUSSET: Sweet and tangy, the russet is ideal fresh, cooked in pies, or as a sauce. Has been around for generations. Late to ripen.

SPARTAN: Spartan is great for eating fresh, in pies and in sauces. Available early October.

GRAVENSTEIN: The pride of Nova Scotia growers, this medium to large apple is juicy and tart, excellent for fresh eating, sauces, and freezing.

I didn’t see Granny Smith in your list. I swear by them for my Blue Ribbon Dutch apple pie. In the fall, when I’m putting together a large quantity of pies for the freezer, I usually mix the Grannys with another type of pie apple.