6 Little Known Uses For Apple Peels
Bakers make apple pies for summer holidays, and an apple a day keeps you-know-who away. But what to do with all those apple peels?
If you’re sending them down the garbage disposal, you’re missing out on some really good uses for this healthful fruit skin, since organic apple peels have six times the antioxidant power of the fruit’s meat.
1. Apple Tea
Technically a tisane rather than a tea, this sweet scented drink is easy to prepare and quite delicious. Simply pour 4 cups of water into a saucepan along with 6 organic apple peels, 1 cinnamon stick (or ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon) and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Boil for about 15 minutes, strain out the peels and cinnamon stick, and sweeten with a tablespoon of honey.
2. Apple Scrap Jelly
All you need to prepare this delicious dessert are the cores and peels from 12-15 organic apples, water, sugar and a little lemon juice. After sterilizing three half pint jars and their lids, dump the apple cores and peels into a big stainless steel pot. Add enough water to cover the ingredients, and boil until the cores are mushy and half the water is gone. Next, strain out the apple scraps. Measure the liquid, then return it to the pot. Add 1/2 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon juice for every cup of apple liquid. Boil over high heat, stirring often, until the mixture reaches the gel point. Ladle the jelly into the sterilized jars. Leave 1/2-inch head space. Seal with two-piece canning lids. And process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes.
3. Amazing Apple Aroma
Forget those costly and often cloyingly scented plug-in air fresheners. Simmer a handful of apple peels on the stove to simulate the scent of fresh-baked apple pie. If citrus aroma is your thing, add some lime peel to the mix. Just place the peels in a saucepan with water and add a cinnamon stick. It’s a good way to rid your house of pet and spicy food odors. To prepare potpourri, dehydrate the peels along with several apple cores and slices. Add bits of cinnamon stick, 2 or 3 ginger slivers and a teaspoon of whole cloves. Make a full cup, store in an airtight container until you’re ready to simmer, then toss the ingredients into a teapot filled two-thirds with water.
4. Apple Peel Vinegar
This vinegar is delicious in salad dressings, as well as being integral to green housecleaning and beauty routines. Using both peels and cores from organic apples, fill a half gallon mason jar tightly, leaving an inch of space at the top. Fill the jar with water, submerging peels and cores. Cover with a cheesecloth and secure it with a rubber band. Store in a warm environment for about a month. When ready to use, pour off liquid and store it in a glass jar.
5. Apple-Peel Twigs
Martha Stewart’s food editor, Anna Kovel, found a way to turn a few apple peels into a tasty snack. Start by mixing organic apple peels with some cinnamon sugar. Wet the peels with a few drops of water to ensure the mixture sticks. Spread the peels in a single layer on parchment-lined baking sheets, and bake in a preheated 250 degrees oven for 2-1/2 hours or until the peels are curled and crispy. Rotate the peels about halfway through and allow them to cool.
6. Smoothie Fiber
If you want to add more fiber to your diet, add some apple peels to your morning smoothie. The next time you make an apple pie or other meal involving organic apples, don’t toss out the peels; store them in a plastic Ziploc bag in the freezer. Then when you’re in the mood for a smoothie, add the peels to add fiber. Mix and blend the peels until they’re smooth.