Yesterday on Facebook I wrote, “I love the first feelings of Autumn and some yummy fresh apple cake from Barber Orchard Fruit Stand for Sunday breakfast!”
There are so many things I love about the fall season in the mountains, and Barber’s Orchard opening up their fruit stand and bakery each year is one of them. They’ve been open for years and people come from all around this time of year. They sell lots of different vegetables and the bakery has fruit pies besides apple, but being an apple orchard, that’s their specialty. In the old orchard building up the hill from there, there used to be a fantastic antique store, but sadly it closed down. I did buy a few treasures in there, though, through the years, and I still have several old Barber’s Orchard apple crates that I use for tables in my house, as end tables for the couch, to hold books, lamps, candles, whatever. I love reusing stuff like those old used crates, and I love apple season. Interestingly, I’m not a huge fan of raw apples or plain apple juice (can I be completely honest here? When my daughters were babies, they drank and threw up a lot of apple juice! Sorry!), although sometimes I do have a hankering for a fresh raw apple. But applesauce, apple butter, spiced apple cider, apple pie, turnovers, fritters, muffins, and, of course, fresh apple cake……now those really hit the spot! By the way, Barber’s cakes come in a loaf, as in my photo, or a bigger Bundt cake. My daughter makes a tasty apple cake, too, and apple dumplings that are yummy!
These are just some of those warm, comforting foods that go along with all the other pleasures of Autumn, and I was glad when my mom mentioned a few days ago about going to Barber’s. Western North Carolina, especially around the Hendersonville area, is known for apples, and they even have an Apple Festival there, too. Just another cool thing to remember if you take a drive to the mountains looking at leaves in a few weeks….stop by a roadside stand and pick up a bag or box of apples and maybe a pumpkin or two, too. What could be more colorful and heartwarming (and tasty) on a beautiful fall day? Hmmm………the more I think about it, the more I’m starting to want a fresh apple! Guess I’ll have to make another trip over the mountain this weekend!
One of my favorite quotes of all times is “It takes an entire Universe to make an apple pie.” (Carl Sagan).** It’s a viewpoint of interconnectedness, and to me, eating is a sacred activity. It connects me with that entire Universe – the people who planted apple trees, picked the apples, baked the pie, sold it or served it to me, and all the other things involved, and the people we share our food with, but it also connects me with the sun, trees, rain, and soil, so that an apple pie (or cake!) is so much more than food sitting on my plate. When I take a bite of it, it becomes a part of me. It’s life, just pure and simple. I’ve taken a lot for granted and now I’m trying to live more mindfully and with a lot more gratitude. Enjoy!
** I have since seen the correct (apparently) version of this Sagan quote, which is “In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe.” (March 2017)
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