Hope you’re enjoying this magical season. I know I am. It’s the busiest and craziest month, yet the merriest time of the whole year. The to-do lists seem never-ending and there never feels like enough time in the day to accomplish it all.
I love to share simple ideas that are easy to replicate, and hopefully make your life easier. I was recently introduced to a unique type of apple, an Opal, and fell in love. Opal Apples were first discovered in Europe in 1999 and introduced to the U.S. in 2010. They’re a cross between a Topaz and a Golden Delicious, and grown only in Washington by Broetje Orchards. The best part? Opal apple is no ordinary apple! This gorgeous, bright yellow apple has an incredibly unique feature – it is naturally non-browning!! That means you can use it for a variety of holiday purposes without the worry of it turning brown.
Here are a few ways I’m using Opal apples this season:
Opal apples a drink garnish.
I love cut fruit in drinks, whether it’s berries in a pretty beverage dispenser or a slice of lime on the side of a cocktail. Because Opal apples don’t brown, you can slice these up and garnish away! They’re great to add to a hot apple cider, apple spritzers, even an apple martini!
For a special touch, cut your apple horizontally (meaning, lay apple on it’s side and cut vertically, but it’ll cut the apple in a horizontal way). When you cut the apple this way, it gives each slice a star in the middle!
Opal apples on cheese board and charcuterie platters.
My go-to party food is always a great cheese and cracker plate. This season, I’m adding Opal apples to my platters since they don’t brown! With their distinctive crispy texture, Opals offer a flavorful eating experience that starts out sweet and fragrant and finishes with a subtle hint of tart. They make a perfect pair with nuts, cheeses, crackers and meat varieties.
Even if you aren’t entertaining, make yourself a cheese and apple platter! When I’m addressing Christmas cards or wrapping gifts, I like to have a snack to keep me going.
Opal apples in simple desserts.
Opals are great for baking! They hold up well and stay firm when cooked. If you don’t have time for baking and need a quick treat, this apple dip is delicious and quick to throw together.
Easy Toffee Apple Dip
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 package Heath english toffee bits (10 ounces)
- 3 Opal Apples, sliced
Directions: In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugars and vanilla. Fold in Heath english toffee bits. Serve with Opal apples.
Not only am I a huge fan of how these amazing apples don’t brown, Opal apples are also known as the apple that gives back! A portion of every Opal sale goes towards youth-based non-profits, empowering youth to put their dreams into action and then serve those most in need within their community. They are only available seasonally while supplies last!
Photos by Kelly Clare Photography
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