Granny Smith is a large green apple that when fully ripe will have an occasional yellow blush. It is distinctly tart, and its flesh does not brown rapidly when sliced. It ripens in October, and it will keep well for over three months.
History: Granny Smith was discovered as a chance seedling by Mrs. Maria Ann “Granny” Smith in 1868 near Sydney, Australia. Although she died two years after her discovery, others took on the task of growing and publicizing Granny Smith as a cooking apple. In 1895 the New South Wales Department of Agriculture began growing the tree and also recognized its potential as an export apple because of its long shelf life. It was exported extensively after WWI, and accounted for over 40% of Australia’s apple production in 1975.*
Taste Profile: Depending on when it is harvested, Granny Smiths can range in taste from very tart to tart. We harvest when the apples show a yellow blush, so their taste is less tart. Granny Smith has a white, dense flesh.
Suggested Uses: Granny Smith has been recognized primarily as a cooking apple. It makes an excellent apple pie, apple crumble or applesauce. However, it also pairs well with flavorful cheese (particularly because the flesh remains white when exposed to air). It can be used for candied apples as its tart flavor complements any sweet coating. It also makes an excellent, full-bodied cider.
*Material drawn from Wikipedia and from Roger Yepsen, Apples. New York: W. W. Norton. 1994. p. 120.