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The Jonamac apple has inherited traits from both its parents, but more closely resembles the McIntosh in appearance and flavor. It is medium in size with a varying shape from flat-round to round-conical, without ribbing, The skin is 80 to almost 100 percent dark red coloring over a green background. Fruits that have been exposed to more sun tend to be redder, and more flavorful. The flesh is white, melting, and juicy. This variety is aromatic, with a complex taste nicely balanced between sweet and acid/tart. The excellent flavor has notes of honey, strawberry, raspberry, and even cinnamon and nutmeg.
Jonamac apples are available in the fall and early winter.
Jonamac apples (botanic name Malus domestica), as their name suggests, are a cross between the more well-known Jonathan and McIntosh apples. Jonamac is sometimes described as an earlier-season McIntosh, ripening slightly earlier in the fall. The Jonamac originated in the twentieth century from upstate New York.
Apples contain a variety of important nutrients and are relatively low in calories. One medium apple has approximately 17 percent of the daily recommended intake of fiber in both soluble and insoluble forms, vitamin C and other antioxidants, and a smaller amount of potassium.
Jonamacs are primarily an eating apple. They are best eaten fresh out of hand, perhaps paired with cheddar cheese, peanut butter, or caramel. Slices turn brown after ten minutes or so. When cooked or baked, Jonamacs fall apart, and so do not make particularly good pie apples on their own. Jonamac apples bruise fairly easily and only store for about six weeks before the flavor and texture breaks down.
The New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, where the Jonamac apple was developed—today called Cornell AgriTech—was started in 1880 to base agricultural progress in experimentation and science. By 1923, the station was part of Cornell University, and over time added new departments beyond fruit and vegetable experimentation. Departments include animal science, grapes and wine, hops, and crop disease.
The first Jonamac apple was grown in 1944 at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, New York. After a period of testing, the variety was introduced to the market in 1972. The Jonamac is grown most frequently near its place of origin in western New York state, but tends to be harder to find in other regions.
Recipes that include Jonamac Apples. One is easiest, three is harder.
|Savich Trek||Jonamac Applesauce|