These cool crisp days, have me humming a bushel and peck with a hug around the neck, which has inspired me to go Apple Picking. So grab a bucket and join us a we explore North Georgia’s Apple Orchards and pick us a bushel and a peck.
I just love all the fall festivities this time of year. One of those activities includes the sometimes overlooked art of apple picking. There is just something about picking your own fruit straight from the tree that satisfies me to my core, yes that pun was intended. So toss on a light weigh plaid shirt and some comfy shoes and head to the orchard to pick those juicy fruits, to make all your fall favorites. Autumn has to be my favorite season, of the year. However, if you had asked me this when I was a child, I would have quickly answered summer. Now a little older and wiser, fall has become the correct answer for me. The earth is starting to cool off, the leaves are starting to change color, not to mention all the bugs are dying off and there is just a slight nip in the air.Today we have decided to visit B.J. Reece Orchards for our apple picking adventure. In Georgia Apple picking season runs mid August through October. If you choose to go during the week, you can avoid the crowds, which is a win win for me, and the orchard is open from 9am-6pm. You can choose the size bag that you want to purchase to fill for take home. They offer a half peck, full peck, and half bushel bags depending on your needs, so you can pick your adventure. You are also allowed to mix and match all the varieties that are in season. So make sure you get some of each kind for all your recipes. They grow 20 different varieties of apples to pick, on over 120 acres. Some of the varieties I saw were Red & Golden Delicious, Crimson Crisp, Pink Lady, Mutsu, Granny Smith, Fuji, Wine Crisp, Blondies, Honey Crisp, Gala, Jonagold, Arkansas Black, Gold Rush, September Wonders & Yates. If you ask me, my favorite types of apples are, Granny Smith’s, closely followed by the Pink Lady’s then maybe Gala. You may have notice all of my favorites were listed, and in season, which makes me happy, happy!I personally love to walk way out into the orchards so you can get really great pictures, without tons of people photo bombing you. Plus I also noticed that the fruit is not as picked over, the further out you go. So just plan to go for a nice lazy like walk with your special someone. You know you can holds hands, talk and pick only the best looking apples that catch your eye along the way.
If you are looking more for a family adventure there is no shortage of entertainment at this orchard. They have pig races, train rides, apple cannons, a petting zoo, pony rides and zip lines. So there are plenty things to keep kids of all ages occupied. They also have a small store for already packed bushels or pecks, along with some tasty ciders, apple butters, handmade pastries and pies.For me the best part of apple picking is making a homemade apple pie when you get home. I like to use mix of Granny Smith and Pink Lady’s and today I scored a half peck of each. I also love to top it with Sharp cheddar cheese for a more savory flavor, which is my families tradition, started by my father. He loved to have his apple pie with a slice of sharp cheddar cheese melted on top. Check out my Apple Pie recipe with a cheddar cheeses crust, I promise it will not disappoint you.You can also take a quick sneak peek at a apple inspired table setting, my Bushel & Peck Tablescape seen here, for more apple inspiring details.Which is a fun way to welcome the fall if you are not really into pumpkins. Along with my delicious recipe for a Hot Caramel Apple Toddy perfect for a evening cocktail hour around the fire pit! This is one of our favorites, we have even served it up on All Hallows Eve to Trick or Treaters on the cooler nights. Of course we have been known add a special treat for our adult friends, wink wink, to make the evening more tolerable, for the long walks through the neighborhood.
Cinnamon Apple Brown Butter Bread
- Stand Mixer
- Mixing Bowls
- 1 Metal Loaf Pan
- Cutting Boards
- Measuring Cups
- Flour Sifter
- 1 large Apple Peeled, finely sliced or chopped
- 1/2 cup Butter Room Temperature, soft
- 2/3 cup White Sugar
- 1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar packed
- 1/2 Tbsp Cinnamon
- 1 cup Golden Raisins (Sometimes I used raisins soaked in Rum)
- 2 Eggs
- 2 tsp Madagascar Vanilla Extract
- 1 1/2 cups All Purpose Baking Flour
- 1/2 Milk
- 1/2 cup Glazed Pecan optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.
- Mix together your brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl and set aside. Cream together white sugar and room temperature butter until smooth.
- Add eggs and Madagascar vanilla and continue to beat on low to medium speed until combined. Add sifted flour and baking powder, then in your milk.
- Pour half the batter into your pan. Add in half the apple slices to top of batter. Sprinkle with half of brown sugar and cinnamon mixture, then fold in Raisins and pecans. Pour the remaining batter over apple layer; top with remaining apples and add more brown sugar and cinnamon mixture to top.
- Bake for 60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. Top with remaining glazed pecans, optional.
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