Emily Dickinson talk April 24

A Roxbury Russet, one of the apples grown in the Dickinson family orchard. (Bar Lois Weeks photo)

Roxbury Russet, one of the apple varieties grown in the Dickinson family orchard. (Bar Lois Weeks photo)

I will give a talk titled “‘From off my Father’s tree!’ Apples of New England and the Dickinson Family Orchard,” at the Emily Dickinson Museum, 280 Main Street, Amherst, Massachusetts, Sunday April 24, at 10 a.m.
The presentation will put the Dickinson orchard in a historical context, including how apples were grown during the poet’s lifetime, the varieties in the Amherst orchard, and how apples were used in Emily’s poetry and in her family’s kitchen. Weather permitting, a portion of the talk will take place in the recently reinstated Dickinson orchard.
Tickets are $10 for adults; $8 for Museum members; and $5 students for student K-12. Tickets may be purchased at the door.
Refreshments will be served.

 

Next Up: Boston Public Market November 14

Please join Al Rose of Red Apple Farm and me for a presentation on cider at the Boston Public Market, 100 Hanover Street, Boston, this Saturday, November 14, from 12 noon to 2 p.m.

Al will give a cider demonstration using a press from his Phillipston, Massachusetts, orchard. He and I will talk about cider making and the history of cider in New England, and we will be available to answer questions. I will have copies of America’s Apple and Apples of New England available for sale and signing.

Come on by to learn more about our rich tradition of cider! Samples will be served.

Four Upcoming Apple Talks

(Russell Steven Powell photo)I WILL BE GIVING a number of presentations about apples in the next month, beginning today, Thursday, October 15. Here is the current schedule:

Thursday, October 15

2:30 p.m.

“The Apples Of New England”

Loomis Village

20 Bayon Drive, South Hadley, Massachusetts

Thursday, October 22

7 p.m.

“Discover The Apples Of New England”

Moses Greeley Parker Lecture Series

Pollard Memorial Library

401 Merrimack Street, Lowell, Massachusetts

Saturday, October 24

2 p.m.

“Apples Of Connecticut”

White Memorial Conservation Center

80 Whitehall Road, Litchfield, Connecticut

Wednesday, November 4

7 p.m.

“How The Orchard Is Changing”

S. White Dickinson Memorial Library

202 Chestnut Plain Road, Whately, Massachusetts

TO SCHEDULE an event, email newenglandapples.org

Fall 2015 Lectures

Green Mountain Orchards, Putney, Vermont (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Green Mountain Orchards, Putney, Vermont (Russell Steven Powell photo)

“THE ORCHARD AS LANDSCAPE” will be the topic of my first two apple lectures this fall, both in Easthampton, Massachusetts.

In “The Orchard As Landscape,” I will look at the contemporary apple orchard from aesthetic, cultural, historical, and horticultural perspectives. I will discuss how the orchard is changing and the way it impacts us beyond providing beautiful fruit.

Here is the current fall lineup:

Thursday, September 17

7 p.m.

“The Orchard As Landscape”

Elusie Gallery

43 Main Street, Old Town Hall, Easthampton, Massachusetts

Art In The Orchard, Park Hill Orchard, Easthampton, Massachusetts (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Art In The Orchard, Park Hill Orchard, Easthampton, Massachusetts (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Saturday, October 10

1 p.m.

“The Orchard As Landscape”

Art in the Orchard

Park Hill Orchard

82 Park Hill Road, Easthampton, Massachusetts

Thursday, October 15

2:30 p.m.

“The Apples Of New England”

Loomis Village

20 Bayon Drive, South Hadley, Massachusetts

Fairview Orchards, Groton, Massachusetts. (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Fairview Orchards, Groton, Massachusetts. (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Thursday, October 22

7 p.m.

“Discover The Apples Of New England”

Moses Greeley Parker Lecture Series

Pollard Memorial Library

401 Merrimack Street, Lowell, Massachusetts

Saturday, October 24

2 p.m.

“Apples Of Connecticut”

White Memorial Conservation Center

80 Whitehall Road, Litchfield, Connecticut

Riverview Farm, Plainfield, New Hampshire (Russell Steven Powell photo)

Riverview Farm, Plainfield, New Hampshire (Russell Steven Powell photo)

TO SCHEDULE an event, email newenglandapples.org

‘Apples of New England’ on ‘Writer’s Voice’

Apple blossoms (Russell Steven Powell photo)

The apple trees are now in bloom in western Massachusetts. (Russell Steven Powell photo)

I TALK ABOUT APPLES and my book Apples of New England with Francesca Rheannon, host of the syndicated radio program Writer’s Voice, in an interview that will air beginning Wednesday, May 13, on a number of stations, from Cape Cod to Alaska.

Locally in western Massachusetts, the program can be heard on:

WMUA, 91.1 FM, Friday, May 15, at 4:30 p.m.

WNNZ, AM-640, Sunday, May 17, at 2 p.m.

The program will also be available via podcast.

To hear the interview, visit How To Listen for details about the podcast or to scroll down and see the full list of radio stations where the program airs.

 

Warm, Crisp Apple Talk This Saturday

Apple Crisp (Bar Lois Weeks photo)

Apple Crisp (Bar Lois Weeks photo)

I WILL ATTEMPT to provide a brief respite from the current cold snap by talking about apples and reading from my two books, America’s Apple and Apples of New England, at 1 p.m. this Saturday, February 21, at the Hadley Garden Center, 285 Russell St. (Route 9), Hadley, Massachusetts. I will enlist a tray (or two) of warm apple crisp to aid me in this task.

I will have with me copies of both books for sale and signing, and the New England Apple Association’s 2015 wall calendar, featuring orchard photography by Bar Lois Weeks and me.

Here is the recipe for the apple crisp, along with its introduction from America’s Apple. We should have plenty on hand Saturday for post-talk refreshments.

The event is free and open to the public. The forecast, of course, is for continued cold temperatures, and possibly some light snow, but (hopefully) not enough to keep everyone home.

Apple Crisp

A fresh apple pie is a thing of beauty: delicious, substantial, and versatile — elegant enough for a dinner party, familiar enough for breakfast the next morning. When you do not have time to roll out a flaky crust to encircle your gently spiced apple filling, apple crisp is the next best thing.

Apple crisp has all the good apple stuff that goes into a pie, with a rich, crunchy topping. There are many variations, such as adding other fruits like cranberries, raisins, or pears, or in the topping (one recipe uses graham crackers rather than flour).

Here is one of my favorites, passed down through the generations from Lois Castell Browns, grandmother of photographer Bar Lois Weeks. Bar substituted whole wheat flour to make it healthier than the original.

6 New England apples, like Northern Spy, McIntosh, or Macoun

1 T lemon juice

1 t cinnamon

1/4 t nutmeg

1/2 t salt

Topping

3/4 c whole wheat flour

1/4 c old-fashioned oats

1/4 c brown sugar or maple syrup

5 T butter

Preheat oven to 350˚. Core and slice apples into a buttered 8” square pan. Sprinkle lemon juice and spices over the apples. Combine topping ingredients to cover the apples.
Bake for 45 minutes or until apples have softened.

*          *          *

Next up: South Hadley Library, South Hadley, Massachusetts, Wednesday, March 25, at 6:30 p.m.