Apple Russeting

Share this post

Russeting on Pippin apples from Heart of the Valley Orchards in Watsonville, CA. 

Shakespeare and his contemporaries called these gems “leather-coats.” The Victorians prized them for their look, texture, and taste, and often depicted them in works of art. And lucky for us, russeted apples are still a special treat that we can enjoy today.

Russeting is a brownish, corky or netlike texture that ranges in coverage from a small patch, typically near the top of the apple, to most of the apple’s surface, the latter being less common. In apples, russeting typically occurs in heirloom varieties, such as Gravensteins, Pippins, and Jonathans. There are also apples that are named for this characteristic texture, including Roxbury Russets, Egremont Russets, Merton Russets, and many more.

Aside from naturally russeted varieties, russeting is commonly due to weather conditions such as moisture that develops on the fruit as it grows, with factors such as a late frost and/or spring humidity playing a role.

The russeted patches are not only edible, they tend to have a nutty flavor. You may also find this aesthetic feature on Asian pears and certain European varieties, such as Bosc and D’Anjou pears.

So next time you see some russeting on your fruit, savor it like Shakespeare.

 

Sign up for our monthly newsletter

 

Recent Food articles:

Make-ahead breakfasts to bring to work with you
June 22, 2017
How to enjoy mobile eateries without guilt
June 6, 2017
From salad to shortcake, ways to enjoy the heart-shaped berry
April 15, 2017
Easy hacks to spice up your packaged food
March 21, 2017
A primer in praise of the potato
February 13, 2017
Blood oranges and kumquats star in a heart-healthy Valentine’s Day dinner
January 19, 2017
Craft cocktail–inspired mocktails for your holiday parties
December 12, 2016
Tips for making your best latkes and applesauce ever
November 16, 2016
Brighten the season with homemade citrus gifts
November 15, 2016
How to pick a peck of pumpkins (and other winter squashes)
October 26, 2016

More recent articles:

Music-focused workouts to get your fitness groove on
June 15, 2017
Developing foot strength for functional living
April 25, 2017
Put down that pill!
April 24, 2017
An affordable approach to a healthy workplace
April 24, 2017
The FruitGuys boosts small farms’ impact on environmental, economic, and community health
April 12, 2017
How to stay sane and productive while telecommmuting
April 12, 2017
Help coworkers of all stripes get along and be productive
March 27, 2017

About Us

Our monthly online magazine features articles about fitness, health, food, and work, as well as recipes featuring farm-fresh fruit!