I wanted to give this post the title of “the best weekend of the year”, but I was afraid that Eric would point out the falsity of that statement. You see, I really love the apple festival, so as we pulled into the apple orchard, I started talking about how this is my favorite weekend of the year, it’s the best thing ever, there’s nothing that can compare with the apple festival, yadda, yadda, yadda. And then Eric, my sweet husband, has to say, “Better than Christmas?” Well, no, the apple festival is not better than Christmas. “Better than the lake?” Well, no, the apple festival is not better than the lake. “Better than vacation?” Okay. You’ve got me. The apple festival probably does not even rank in my top 5 favorite events of the year. But I do love it.
Eric and I have a tradition (I love traditions) of visiting the Evans Orchard Apple Festival each year in Georgetown. I love that it’s an official “fall” activity, even though it is typically super hot and humid and miserable outside. This year, however, it came at the tail end of this crazy cold week, so the weather could almost pass for autumn. I even wore jeans in celebration. Have I mentioned that I love fall?
Anywho, every year we take the beautiful drive (hello, horse farms!) to Georgetown to pick our own apples. As a person who did not grow up on a farm or ever hang out on a farm as a child, I think I have an odd obsession with all things farm/orchard/vineyard/homegrown. I want an apple tree. And a farm. And heck, throw in a vineyard. I digress…
At the orchard, you get a bag and a map with all of the types of apples that are ready for picking highlighted, and then you are sent into the rows and rows of trees. Unfortunately, we went a little early in the apple season this year, so we had limited varieties for picking, but we managed to snag plenty for eating and baking. After wandering through the orchard for a bit, we headed back to the shop to pick up some local sweet potato butter (we haven’t tried it yet, but the Campbells promise it’s awesome), preserves, and our traditional caramel apples.
Is there anything better than a caramel apple? Perhaps. But on a breezy fall day of apple picking, it really hits the spot.
A few of our baking apples have already made it into an apple pie, which we shared with our small group (in hopes of not eating the whole thing ourselves). I wish I could say that I have a tried and true apple pie recipe, but I pick a different one every time. This one (a Paula Deen recipe) was quite delicious and was a perfect stepping stone into fall. Expect many apple and pumpkin foods over the next few months. They are simply the best.