It’s time to get crispy!

At The Fork's house the other day, an apple crisp was baked, and it was delicious. Oh sure, the baker (who shall remain nameless) insisted on following a recipe that called for seemingly too much apple cider vinegar—which yielded a kind of strange taste and also now our house smells like apple cider vinegar—but on the second day, the baker rested, the crisp settled into something delicious and we went to town on that bad boy (with ice cream, duh).

And this got us thinking about apples. Sure, we've had them our whole lives and they're always around thanks to the ridiculous global demand which dictates that seasons be damned—anytime is apple time, but some are better than others, obviously.

For example, that honey crisp we sampled in Seattle was about a bazillion times better than the waxy red delicious we picked up at Albertson's. Duh, right? Right (and RIP to that Dixon apple orchard, because daaaaaaaaayam, those were good apples), but it occurred to us that we've been taking apples for granted and don't really know a whole lot about them.

Insert fun facts:

Did you know that something like 2,500 varieties of apples are grown in the US, but that the crab apple is the only kind native to our shores? Makes sense to us—America loves presiding over crap and then taking credit for the good stuff built or spawned in other countries.

Did you also know that it takes, like, 2 pounds of apples to make a real good pie? Seems like a lot, but when we get into the whole "American as apple pie" thing, we don't want to mess around.

We bet you didn't know that we're smack-dab in the middle of apple season in New Mexico (unless you're an apple farmer), but it's true—August and September are our state's best apple months. It varies elsewhere, but we're pretty sure everyone everywhere identifies this time of year as apple time. (By the way, from noon-6 pm on Sunday Sept. 16, the Los Luceros Historic Property in Alcalde invites folks to pick its bumper crop at the Fall Apple Festival, so maybe you should plan on that.)

We hear the largest apple of all time weighed in at a stunning 3 pounds, which doesn't sound like a lot, but have you ever held an apple? Or weighed an apple? Or LOVED an apple? Three pounds is just fine.

The domestic apple biz pulls in a little over $1 billion a year. Holy smokes!

That thing we said before about wax? It's pretty commonplace. And though we've been told that said wax is made from natural ingredients (whatever that means), organic and sans-wax is probably the way to go.

Lastly, there's a healthy number of apple orchards in our state, which we know because we found this-here map. Keeping in mind that a peck of apples is approximately 10.5 pounds, you might wanna visit while we're in the high season.

This has been The Fork with your guide to the exciting world of apples.

Don’t forget our contest!

Last week we told you about our currently running food photo contest, and the submissions are pouring in. Wanna get in on the fun and maybe win $200 worth of prizes from our food and drink partners? Click here.

Also…

-Word on the street is that there are only a few more chances to catch the Southside Farmers Market, aka El Mercado del Sur. If you've been putting it off, now's the time—the last weekly market is Tuesday Sept. 25.

-Chef Martin Rios (of Restaurant Martín here in Santa Fe) is one of 16 chefs taking part in the James Beard Foundation's 16th Chef's Boot Camp at Shellburne Farms in Vermont. While there, Rios will pick up some new tricks, collaborate with other superstar chefs and generally have a fun time, we assume. Said chefs will also discuss how to affect agricultural policy in the US, which is pretty cool!

-This one's for all you pet lovers out there who maybe don't know yet, but are you down with Marty's Meals? It's a cool local company that makes fresh meals for dogs that don't contain GMOs or bone fragments or whatever gross stuff ends up in mainstream dog food. We hear that Marty's has had life-changing results for sick or older dogs, so you should check 'em out if you're looking to up your dog food game.

-Do you know about the Santa Fe Foodies group on Facebook? It's a gathering of food fans, purveyors and general appreciators. It's handy, we promise. Click here to see about joining up with 'em.

-We hear they're hiring servers at the Santacafé, a restaurant where The Fork worked a million years ago and where someone with a knack for wine pairings and pleated pants can make MONEY. Check it. Get some of that creme brulee while you're at it. So good.

-This actually reminds us of a cool local business that we may have mentioned before but we wanted to mention again because we took part once and it was super-rad and included Santacafé: We speak of Food Tour New Mexico, the tour that comes with so much food but also really fun local guides who color (or pepper, if you will, which you should) their journeys with interesting information. Book a tour today. And no, we weren't paid by anyone to do this, we just think they're cool. Dang!

¡TRUE STORY UPDATE!

The Fork told our dad that we related the story of his lobster to our readers last week (visit here if you missed it), and he would like everyone to know that he feels regret and that no one should ever eat a living lobster—and not just because it's gross.

"I was scared," he said, "but I also didn't want to offend the guy."

Of course, in this day and age, we should have less of a problem setting boundaries when it comes to not eating animals that are still alive. Dad would also like any vegans to know that he's sorry.

More Tidbits

-Since we all know the best jokes are the ones you have to explain to people later, allow us to illuminate you, dear readers, on the humorous contents of our sports joke from last week. If you missed it, we mentioned a disgusting-looking burger available at the stadium that hosts the Arizona Cardinals—a football team that we jokingly called a baseball team. The way this joke works, see, is that The Fork is so clueless when it comes to sports that even googling a team name didn't help us get it right. OK? OK. Thanks anyway for your emails wherein you seemed so shocked we'd dare to not care. We still don't. About sports, anyway.

-The Fork knows how to be poor and still eat (Hellllllooooooo, noodles!), but if you should ever find yourself in a pinch and wooking po nub in all the wrong places, remember this piece from US News that breaks down foods to buy when you're pretty broke.

-According to NPR's The Salt, women chefs still face their fair share of troubles in today's culinary world. We hate that and invite any misogynists to get real.

-We stumbled upon this pretty neat Washington Post article about simple recipes to make in a microwave—in mugs. The future truly is now. But we don't know, you guys … microwaves kind of bum The Fork out. We find that they make things soggy and floppy. Are we just doing it wrong? Are you a microwave impresario? Can you help? SHOULD you? If you've got tips, we're ready to hear them.

¡OVERRATED RESTAURANT ALERT!

We got bunches of suggestions for local restaurants that may be beloved but might not be so great. We're going to take them one at a time and open up the floor for debate. Tell us why you agree or don't or whatever.

First up is Tia Sophia's, an eatery where The Fork has scarfed down more Brekkie Bs in the last few years than you have in your lives. It's a downright institution, wouldn't you say? Not so, according to Fork reader Julia, who described it as a "tourist trap."

Could it be that we're just familiar with it so we think it's good? Y'know, like the way most people like music? Eaters do indeed love the things they already know, but we're not so sure Julia's right. Send your thoughts to thefork@sfreporter.com and let's talk about it in a kindly manner.

And stay tuned for next week when we'll jump into another one. We're also open to underrated restaurants. And remember—just because something's local doesn't mean it's great.

Finally

Wow, you readers really love us, which we know from the huge spike in emails. Oh sure, many of them were like, "Sorry you didn't get a lot of emails last week, Fork—we still love you!" No problem, though, because The Fork isn't too good for pity. That's how most of our relationships have started.

A Totally Scientific Breakdown of The Fork's Correspondence

Number of Letters Receieved
38
*Yeeeeeeeeeeeeah!

Most Helpful Tip of the Week (edited slightly for lengnth)
“…just could not take any more of the slang/casual writing style.”
The Fork is sorry we tried to be real with all y’all, but Dickens we’re not. It’s a food newsletter. Let’s all relax.

Actually Helpful Tip (only slightly edited for content)
“I don’t understand how you only got 9 letters last week.”
*Samesies!

In the print edition of SFR this week, find out why it's imperative that your support the Santa Fe Juice Bar, not least because they do smoothies in bowl form. WHAT?! What a time to be alive!

Forkin' it and Forkin' it and Forkin' it well
The Fork

PS: Our dad says hi.