Apples to Apples; The fruit comes in a variety of sizes, benefits

Published 6:55 am Saturday, November 10, 2018

Apples come in a variety of shapes and colors. And I’m sure you’ve noticed the range in sizes as well.

To give you an idea, smaller apples are about the size of a tennis ball; larger ones are closer to softball-sized.

In fact, some large apples can yield 2 cups of apple slices — that’s nearly 60 percent more fruit than a small apple. This can be a good thing for baking or cooking, but snacking might be a different story.

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So why are some  apples so big?

According to Purdue University researcher and professor Peter Hirst, there are three main things that affect apple growth: the size and number of cells in the apple (which can depend on the variety), crop load of the tree, and environmental factors, such as temperature and light.

Growers can help control fruit size of certain varieties by using techniques such as thinning and making sure the soil is of good quality. Even still, some apples will naturally grow smaller or larger than others.

What’s the serving size?

As a general rule, one small apple is considered a one-cup serving size of fruit. Although, there’s certainly no shame in eating a large apple (after all, larger apples have nearly twice the fiber). But if you need to pack a snack for a child or monitor serving sizes to help manage diabetes, buying smaller apples can help control portions and prevent half-eaten apples from winding up in the trash.

How do apples keep the doctor away?

In addition to being an excellent source of vitamin C—a powerful natural antioxidant that protects your cells from damage—one small apple has about four grams of fiber and no fat, sodium, or cholesterol.

PB&T Apple Wafers

Serves 3


•1 Lil Snappers apple

•3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

•2 tablespoons toffee bits (found in baking section of most markets), placed in a shallow bowl


1. Place apple on cutting board, with stem up. Cut a thin slice from each side of the apple to reveal a flat edge. Carefully cut three round slices, approximately 1/4” or less in width, from each side. These coreless “wafers” will serve as the tops and bottoms of each sandwich cookie.

2. To assemble, match similar size slices from each side together. Place approximately 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on one slice of each pairing and spread slightly to edge.

3. Top with coordinating slice of apple and gently press two wafers together so that peanut butter oozes out just a bit all around edge. Gently roll peanut butter-exposed edge in toffee bits. Repeat with remaining wafers.

Nutrition — Calories: 140, Cholesterol: 2mg, Fat: 9g, Sodium: 84mg, Saturated Fat:3g, Sugar Content: 11g, Protein: 3g.