I am a freak about buying locally made and grown foods. So much so that I am willing to go to some extents to get them, like arriving at the neighbors dairy at 6 am with a milk bucket to skim the cream off the cold tank. I hit pay dirt recently finding a new apple variety. There over 7,000 different apples species in the world so trying them all is difficult. If you shop only at the supermarket and never visit farms and farmers market, you will be stuck with the basics, McIntosh, Red delicious, Granny Smith, Rome etc. While these types are great, they all to often come covered in wax or they are old and mealy. I strongly recommend visiting your local apple orchard should you live nearby one. Now the epiphany part of the story!
I found a local orchard, and here in western NC there are many, they have about 50 acres of trees and they harvest 23 varieties. One is called the Gold Rush; I personally never have seen this one. It is a spectacular specimen. Tart, sweet, firm, the attributes are many! I bought a large bag of them along with 2 gallons of freshly pressed cider, only a few hours old. No preservatives, no additives, just fresh juice, it was so good I have gone thru a gallon in two days. I cant tell you how excited I am about these apples. Tonight, I put them to the test. I made a classic pate?brisee (French pie dough) then carefully pressed it into a buttered tart pan. Then I carefully arranged thinly peeled slices of the Gold Rush apples. I mixed 1-cup heavy cream, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and two tablespoons of flour in a bowl, whisked it up, and then poured it into the tart pan over apples. (cook?s note: many recipes say to blind bake and dock the pie dough, I did not do these things and got perfect results) Off to the oven for about 1 hour at 350. This thing was absolutely the BOMB, as the kids say! I made a second one for my neighbor. This apple, this recipe will certainly be in my future and my family?s mouths for years to come. Cant wait till they come in season next year, I will be at the orchard with my tail wagging waiting for more. Try local foods and you too can have food epiphanies all year long with local seasonal delights!!