Ein Shemer Apples
Inventory, lb : 0
Ein Shemer apples are a medium to large varietal, averaging 7 to 9 centimeters in diameter, and have a round to elongated, conical shape. The apples often have a tapered appearance with a narrow base and bear smooth skin with a semi-thin, matte surface. The skin also has brown russet around the stem and a yellow-green to pale yellow base coloring, sometimes blushed with red-orange patches where the fruit is exposed to sunlight. Underneath the surface, the white to cream-colored flesh is tinged with green and has a firm, textured, and aqueous nature with a crisp, snap-like consistency. The flesh also encases a small central core filled with oval, black-brown seeds. Ein Shemer apples emit a light, grassy aroma and have a sweet, subtly acidic flavor with a tangy, fruity undertone.
Ein Shemer apples are available in the spring through summer.
Ein Shemer apples, botanically classified as Malus domestica, are an Israeli variety belonging to the Rosaceae family. The springtime apples grow on large trees that can reach 3 to 7 meters in height and were bred to thrive in warm climates. Ein Shemer apples have a low chilling requirement, allowing the variety to be cultivated in areas where most apple cultivars cannot survive, including the southern united states, Arizona, and southern California. The apple cultivar is also highly productive, producing fruits in dense clusters, and is self-pollinating, a favorite of home gardeners. Ein Shemer apples are one of the most popular varieties grown commercially in Israel and are a dual-purpose apple consumed fresh or utilized in sauces, baked goods, and beverages. Outside of Israel, Ein Shemer apples are cultivated on a small scale through specialty orchards in the United States and are also planted in home gardens of apple enthusiasts throughout warmer climates worldwide.
Ein Shemer apples are a source of vitamins such as vitamin C to strengthen the immune system, vitamin A to maintain healthy organ functioning, vitamin E to protect the cells against free radical damage, and vitamin K to assist in faster wound healing. The apples also provide fiber to regulate the digestive tract, potassium to balance fluid levels within the body, and other minerals, including magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, calcium, and phosphorus.
Ein Shemer apples have a sweet, subtly tart flavor well suited for fresh and cooked preparations. The crisp apples are popularly consumed straight, out of hand, sliced over toast, layered into sandwiches, or tossed into salads, slaws, and fruit bowls. Ein Shemer apples can also be cut and displayed on cheese boards, dipped into nut butter, chocolate, or caramel as a snack, or incorporated into beverages such as cider, smoothies, and juices. In addition to fresh preparations, Ein Shemer apples can be baked into cakes, pies, crisps, crumbles, scones, and muffins. Cooking will enhance the apple’s sweetness, and the fruits can be sauteed in brown butter and spices as a savory-sweet topping for ice cream, simmered into apple sauce, or roasted with main dishes. The apples can also be cooked into apple butter, jellies, jams, or processed into vinegar. Ein Shemer apples pair well with meats such as pork, chicken, and turkey, herbs including sage, rosemary, and parsley, pears, winter squash, parsnips, nuts such as pecans, walnuts, and almonds, honey, brown sugar, butter, sharp cheeses, and warm spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, and cardamom. Whole, unwashed Ein Shemer apples have a short shelf life and will only keep 1 to 2 weeks when stored in the refrigerator’s crisper drawer.
Ein Shemer apples were named after a kibbutz in northern Israel. Kibbutz in Hebrew means “gathering” and is a descriptor for a settlement unique to Israel. Most of these communities are centered around communal farming, and each member of the settlement works for the benefit of the group. The Ein Shemer kibbutz is located in the sloping foothills of Sheffela, a region near the sea of Galilee, and was established by eighteen women and thirty-six men in 1913. It took several years for the community to institute agricultural roots, but eventually, the settlement had developed a successful system of cultivating fruits and vegetables in a desert climate, later creating Ein Shemer apples. The name Ein Shemer is derived from Hebrew, with “Ein” meaning “Spring,” and “Shemer,” the name of an ancient king once known as the “Shemer of Shomron.”
Ein Shemer apples were developed in the 1950s by Abba Stein, a member of the Ein Shemer kibbutz in Israel. Stein sought to create new apple varieties that would survive in warm and harsh desert climates, and Ein Shemer was bred from a cross between golden delicious and zabidani apples. Stein produced several popular apple cultivars throughout his breeding career, including Ein Shemer and Anna apples, which are the most commercially grown varieties throughout Israel. In 1967, Ein Shemer apples were imported into the United States and were later approved by the United States Department of Agriculture for cultivation in American orchards. Ein Shemer apples can grow in regions with a warmer climate, and the first commercial planting of the apples came from budwood raised at the University of Florida campus in Gainesville. Today Ein Shemer apples are cultivated commercially throughout the Middle East and on a small scale in the south and southwestern regions of the United States.