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When I buy apples I tend to buy the Granny Smith variety. I've heard that it's more of a baking variety than one for eating directly, but I like it better than others I've tried. The only two names I can recall are Red Jacket and Red Delicious. I know there are tons of types of apple that I'll never eat unless I make an effort. Which types should I, as a Granny Smith fan, go out of my way to try? As far as I can tell I like both the acidity and the crispness of the Granny Smiths.

Wikipedia tells me that Granny Smiths "The tree is thought to be a hybrid of Malus sylvestris, the European Wild Apple, with the domestic apple M. domestica as the polleniser." I've been unable to find European Wild Apples nor any other varietals that are derived from them.

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Nobody sells wild apples because 1) they are just way too sour for almost all customers' tastes, and 2) you get much less and smaller apples than from a cultivated tree. –  rumtscho Feb 10 at 11:07

3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Granny Smith apples are rather tangy. I would reccommend Pink Lady's or Braeburns.

Let me know if you have any questions

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Granny Smith's popularity as a baking variety is mostly due to its firmness and tartness, which will offset the caramalized sugars from baking the apple and prevents the apple from falling apart, but theres no reason you can't eat it plain as well. Actually I also prefer fresh apples which arent too sweet, and granny smith's are one of my favorites to snack on as well.

Now, there are hundreds of different apple cultivars (or varieties), and many will probably not be available locally, and you haven't mentioned what it is you like about granny smith apples, so I can't specifically reccomend that many apples.

That being said, I would cross reference wikipedia's list of apple cultivars with attributes you like in an apple, and see what comes up. For example if you like tart apples you could try Honeycrisp or Pippins. If you like firm apples try Golden Delicious, or Golden Gala.

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Your best bet is to try a number of apples and try to establish what characteristics you like. Granny Smiths are easy to have as a fave because they're pretty much the only bright green apple you'll see in the store. But if you start to read the signs or labels, and buy 1 or 2 of various kinds, you might discover some stars. For example I'm a Granny Smith fan too, and I really like Honeycrisp, which are not always available (oooh, seasons, there's a concept) and I get excited when they appear in the stores. But I don't like Gala, which look very much the same.

After a while you can get even more particular. I like a Macintosh in September but not in June. Nitrogen storage or no nitrogen storage, Macs are not a keeping apple and I don't like them by the summer time. You can also start going to a more specifically fruit-and-veg store, or a farmer's market, to discover cultivars that don't get sold in the big stores. Chances are, you'll only be able to eat that apple when it's in season, but that's not such a bad thing.

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