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An apple a day...

The trees in the UK are groaning with apples so this week’s blog suggests ideas of what to do with them and what they will do for you.

Apples contain small amounts of a number of nutrients, the one that apples are a particularly good source of is vitamin C. And probably where the saying ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ comes from. Vitamin C supports the immune system. It is also a water soluble vitamin; this means that it is not stored in the body and must be consumed every day. Other benefits of vitamin C are that it is an antioxidant which as discussed in previous blogs helps prevent and delay the progression of Parkinson’s. Also vitamin C helps wound healing and is essential to collagen maintenance. Collagen provides structural support in the body, including the skin – and who doesn’t want firm skin!

So what to do with all those apples. Eating apples can just be eaten and will store for some time if wrapped in newspaper in a box and kept somewhere cool. Apple coleslaw made from shredded cabbage, carrots, onion, apple and a little mayonnaise is also very good. Perhaps try on a jacket potato for lunch? But what to do with all those cooking apples? Probably the healthiest thing is to bake them, as not much sugar needs to be added. Just place on a baking tray, sprinkle with a little sugar and bake for 30 – 40 minutes at 180C. For something a bit more special try the Baked Apple and Blackberry recipe below.

Baked apple and blackberry

4 cooking apples

4 tbsp honey

½ tsp ground cinnamon

Finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange

250g blackberries

Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4/fan 160C. Core the apples so you have a hole the size of a coin in each one. Make a cut just into the skin around the middle of each apple.

Stand the apples in a shallow baking dish large enough to take all four. Mix together the honey, cinnamon and orange zest, put an equal amount into the cavity of each apple, then pour the orange juice into the dish.

Roast the apples for about 40 minutes, spooning the juices over them occasionally. Then, when the apples are almost ready, spoon the blackberries around and over the top of each apple. Return to the oven for 10 minutes or until the juices start to run. Spoon the blackberries and juices over the apples to serve.



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