Picking now … Apples


While apples are always available in our stores these days due to modern coldstore technology, apples are actually in season – and therefore at their juiciest, crunchiest best – from early March, throughout April, and into May.  Like all Tasmanians know their potato varieties, all Tasmanians should know their apple varieties, when they’re at their most delicious and what they are best used for. Here’s the rundown:


Royal Gala kicks off the season in Tassie, picking from early March. They are a crisp, sweet apple with a yellow-orange skin with red striping. They make great eating, and are good in salads.


Golden Delicious and Jonagold come next. Golden Delicious have a bright golden-yellow skin, turning from green to gold when they are sweet and ready to eat. They are also a great cooking apple for tarts, crumbles and pies.


Jonagold is a large apple with a tangy sweet flavour and honey notes.  It’s a great eating and cooking apple.


Mid-season varieties include Jazz, Fuji and Granny SmithPink Lady is never picked earlier than April.


Jazz originated in New Zealand as a cross between Gala and Braeburn apples. They have a pink/red blush skin, a firm dense, yet juicy flesh and a tangy, sweet flavour. They maintain their sweetness and crisp texture when baked, and are an excellent dessert apple perfect in baked goods like muffins, cakes and pies.


Granny Smith, with its well-known apple-green skin and tart flavour, is the ideal cooking apple, perfect for baking, pies, salads and sauces. 


Pink Lady was developed in the 1970s as a cross between Golden Delicious and Lady Williams. They are crisp apple with a firm flesh and an almost effervescent flavour. Their distinctive pink colour and mouth-watering crunch have made them Australia’s favourite apple and have earned them the title “Queen of Apples”.


Rubigolds are picked right through the season until May. A relatively new variety of apple, they were developed in Tassie’s Huon Valley by the Griggs family, sixth generation orchardists. The apple has a ruby skin and a gold coloured flesh, and is delicious to eat as well as great for cooking or juicing. They require little or no added sugar due to their natural sweetness. When cut they don’t discolour as quickly as other varieties so they are perfect for fruit salad or cheese platters.


The latest-picked variety, Sundowner, is picked well into May, as they require long slow ripening. First developed from the same “parent” apples as Pink Lady, they are a bi-coloured red and yellow apple and like the Pink Lady, are a delicious sweet/tart eating apple, as well as a good baking apple.

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