This year we’re excited to announce a partnership with HEX Ferments and Atwaters to make sauerkraut and apple butter! All the apples were harvested from August-September from Carroll Park in southwest Baltimore. Created as a replica of a historic orchard maintained on the site previously, 60 heirloom apple trees (16 different varieties), several sour cherries, and a few plums are producing an abundance of apples for the Pigtown neighborhood.
Most probably haven’t heard of, or at least gotten to try, many of the apple varieties grown in Carroll Park. Apples with names like Maiden Blush, Nonpariel, Northern Spy, and Calville Blanc d’Hiver don’t normally make it onto the shelves in grocery stores. These heirloom varieties were grown in the 16th and 17th century, chosen for taste and preservation rather than appearance and storage. Often times, these apples have an odd shape or inconsistent coloring (though they taste better than most of the commercially produced varieties).
Of all the varieties we harvested this year, I’m most excited about the Roxbury Russets. Discovered in Massachusetts in the 1600’s, it’s believed to be the oldest apple cultivar found in North America. It has firm flesh and a balance of sweetness and tartness. All the apples that HEX is using in their orchard kraut are Roxbury Russets. If you’re interested in learning more about heirloom apple varieites, check out orange pippin!
We’ll be at the Waverly Farmers Market on the 18th, so keep an eye out for us and these great apple products!