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Apple Tips from A to Z: 26 Interesting Facts about Apples

Apple Tips from A to Z: 26 Interesting Facts about Apples

Learn about the "fruit of sin", beloved by doctors and famous figures worldwide, from the Beatles to Steve Jobs...

By FDL on

Adam’s apple. The Adam’s apple, in truth, has very little to do with the fruit: a protrusion at the front of the male larynx, it has the function of altering the resonance of the male voice. Many people think that a pronounced Adam’s apple is a sign of virility.

Beatles. Apple Records is the label founded by the Fab Four in London. It was also involved in a legal battle with Apple computers. Hence, the Beatle’s green granny smith apple found itself in a fight with the bitten apple from Cupertino, CA.

Cider and calvados. Apple juice can be used to make some very tasty alcoholic beverages: cider, bubbly and sweet, is made by fermenting the fruit, and never has more than 7% alcohol by volume. Calvados, on the other hand, is an apple brandy with an alcohol content of around 40% ABV.

Drying. Even though apples are usually eaten fresh, many producers cut them into slices and let them dry, selling the slices in packets like potato chips. It’s very hard to stop eating them once you start.

Eden. In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve lived perfectly happily, before being thrown out for eating the forbidden fruit: the apple has been a symbol of sin and covetousness since the first sacred scriptures. Indeed, it’s impossible to resist taking a bite.

Fake. In botany, the apple is considered a ‘fake fruit’, as it develops from the ovary of the flower. The real fruit, rather, is the core, where the seeds are contained.

Genome. In 2010, an Italian firm made an announcement: it had decoded the genome of the Golden Delicious (the popular yellow apple variety). It is said to have 57,000 genes, even more than the human genome: we only have 30,000.

Heaviest. The world’s heaviest apple, according to the Guinness Book of Records, was measured in 2005: it weighed in at 1.85 kilos, and was grown in the Japanese city of Hirosaki.

Insects. In order to avoid the use of pesticides, apple growers commonly use a technique which causes sexual confusion amongst insects: a special spray makes them reproduce less, resulting in less damage to the fruit.

Jobs. Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple Computer Inc, can boast a professional career built on apples and chips now spanning 35 years. The bitten apple logo is one of the world’s most recognizable.

Kazakhstan. This is where apples originally came from. In this nation you can find the city of Almaty, which literally means ‘the apple place’.

La Boum. This French film from 1980 starring Sophie Marceau made adolescents the world over dream. Curiously, only in Italy was its title significantly altered: there, it was released as ‘Il Tempo delle Mele’, or ‘the age of apples’. In the USA a more literal translation was used – ‘The Party’.

Malus domestica. The Latin name for the apple tree is Malus domestica. When it reaches maturity, it stands between 5 and 12 meters tall, and in Spring it is covered in spectacular white flowers.

New York. The Big Apple: bigger than any other. This city has a nickname known the world over. There are a number of theories as to why it took this name, but its popularity is down to a 1971 advertising campaign, which used an image of a red apple as a means of encouraging tourists to come visit. It was a great success.

One apple a day. The old American proverb recommends that you eat one apple a day to keep the doctor away. It’s always best keep the nutritional qualities of this tasty fruit in mind.

Paris of Troy. It was Paris who awarded Aphrodite the Golden Apple of Discord, on which was written the Greek word ‘kallistēi’ (‘to the fairest one’), rejecting Hera and Athena and provoking their wrath. That’s why it’s said that it was this gesture that sparked the Trojan War.

Quantity. There are many apples in the world: the FAO, in 2009, reported that 71 million tons of the fruit was produced in that year. China is the world’s largest producer, producing over 40% of the total, followed by the United States and Europe (taken as a whole).

Red Delicious. Red apples are the world’s best-loved: the most common variety is the Red Delicious, which is of American origin, and is juicy, sweet and beautifully scented. It’s also the variety most commonly depicted in fables and advertising.

Snow White. The Princess of the eponymous fable fell into a deep sleep after biting into a poisoned apple. Looked after by her seven dwarves, only the kiss of her Prince Charming could wake her.

Tarte Tatin. This is France’s tastiest tart, which is unusual because it is said that is was invented because of a mistake. In fact, you cook it the wrong way round: the apples underneath, and the pastry above. Just as tasty are America’s apple pie, and Germany’s Strudel.

Universal law of gravitation. Academics still argue over the veracity of the legend: according to many, however, the theory of universal gravitation was thought up by the English mathematician Isaac Newton after an apple fell from the tree he was sitting under, hitting his head.

Vinegar. Apples can also be used to make some great vinegars, which have a very delicate taste, and which are ideal on all kinds of salads and cooked vegetables.

William Tell. The national hero of Switzerland demonstrated his skill by splitting an apple balanced on the head of his son Walter with a bolt from his crossbow. It was thanks to his rebellion that the modern nation of Switzerland came into being in 1300.

Xinjiang. In the Chinese region of Xinjiang were found wild ancestors of Malus domestica and Malus sieversii, the scientifc name given to apples.

Yo-Yo effect. Research has found that over 75% of those people who lose weight through dieting put weight back on as soon as they stop. In all of the best-known ‘maintenance’ diet regimes, dieticians are agreed: instead of eating sweets, eat an apple instead, which encourages the production of gastric juices and suppresses your appetite.

Zeus. Greek legend says that once upon a time men were perfect, and had double the amount of limbs. Zeus, however, the jealous god, cut them in half like an apple, obliging them to search for ‘the other half of the apple’ for the rest of their lives. They were never to find it.

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