Whenever I see the name “Red Delicious” thoughts of anything delicious immediately leave my mind. This apple is the perfect example of what is wrong with produce in America. It is all about what looks good. Taste takes a distant second place. And there is no place where that is more obvious than with the Red Delicious apple. It looks wonderful. It has a dark almost black color skin and has the perfect apple shape. It is a great apple to take a picture of. Just as long as you never take a bite. It is one of the worst tasting apples that is available at every store. It’s mealy and has a tough skin. It is just bad. So why does everyone have it? Well at one point the Red Delicious actually was what it names suggests. But over the years the apple has changed because people motivated by dollar signs though the consumer would buy more apples if the apples look darker red and had the perfect shape. And it worked, people slowly had the wool pulled over their eyes.
But thanks to a vendor at the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market I was able to get my hands on a older verison of the Red Delicious. This variety called the Hawthrone is different from the Red Delicious you find in produce sections today. Just look at the picture above. It looks similar in some ways, but most people probably won’t think that is a Red Delicious. Yet it is more Red Delicious than the current offering.
My Experience with this Apple (Rating Scale 1-10)
Tartness : 4
Apple Flavor: 5
Overall Feeling: This older version of the Red Delicious is way better than what you find today. It is not mealy like those apples are. Overall texture is better. The skin is tough, but not as much as the current version. I would not call it my favorite apple, but it makes me sad that the apple industry has ruined what was a decent apple. As for uses, this version is good out of hand and would work well in cooking. I am thinking of using some of them in a batch of applesauce. If you wish to find these old Red Delicious apples, you are going to have to go directly to a farmers who has older trees with old varieties. This is why I love shopping at the farmers market. You get produce that will never make to your grocery store.