Upstate is good; that is, it’s good to get out of the city. Often times it is quite easy to forget that NYC is a part of NY State. 30 minutes north of the Bronx and the world becomes a different place. Right now it is filled with summer to autumn transitioning leaves . On Friday, the family took the day off from our 9-5 and headed north with the sole purpose of picking apples. It was a much needed “mini-stay-cation” that reminded us that we don’t need to hop on a plane to have some really good and  affordable down time.

We made our way to Applewood Orchards right before noon. Izzy was quick to run around in the wide open grassy field that also doubles as their parking lot. We stopped in the little orchard store, ate a couple of apple donuts – go early before they run out – and we purchased our apple bag.

We picked mostly McIntosh apples, and I didn’t realize that the Gala apples were on the back lot. We returned back to Brooklyn with our 1/2 bushel. Kati made apple pie and I made an apple honey BBQ sauce built on a homemade ketchup from Kati’s backyard tomato garden. The sauce complemented the brisket from United Meat Market we picked up on our way back home and then smoked over apple wood. Yes, we are all about apples, and it made for a wonderful weekend.

I’m inspired to tweak our Cinnamon Apple ice cream flavor. The original version combines dried apples and apple brandy. I’m thinking of a fresh version that will last as long as I can get fresh apples from upstate New York. So we’ll hit the farmer’s markets and gather as much as we can. If you get chance, make sure you head upstate for some apple picking.  Otherwise – or in addition to – you can grab a pint or two of our Cinnamon Apple ice cream and come pretty close to the experience.

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