Have you ever found a wild apple-looking fruit that was much too little to be an actual apple? Most likely, you have tasted one of the various crab apple kinds. The big crab apple trees, adorned with magnificent blossoms in the spring and summer, are a stunning addition to any garden.
What is crab apple?
The term "crab apple" does not specify any specific type of apple. Small or immature wild apples are what this term usually refers to. The majority of crab apples have a tart flavour that works well in jellies and preserves. The height, colour, and flavour of the fruit produced by crab apple trees can all differ greatly. Crab apple trees may or may not produce fruit; some may only bloom in the summer. Let's check over a couple of the most well-liked kinds of crab apples.
Crab apple tree:
The fruit of the crab apple tree, which bears little apples, blooms in the spring. The fruit of these trees is used as food by a wide variety of animals, and they are also useful as pollinators. Crab apple trees, as a group, are both visually pleasing and ecologically beneficial.
In the same way that other apple trees do, they are classified under the genus Malus. However, their fruit is a little sour, unlike the popular Red Delicious and Honeycrisp varieties.
Can you eat crab apple?
Crab apples are edible, but they may not be best enjoyed fresh from the tree. Raw consumption of these small fruits is sure to leave you with a bitter taste in your mouth. But in homemade treats, their apple-like flavour really comes through.
How do crab apples look like?
Crab apples are so little that they can easily be mistaken for cherry blossoms. These tiny fruits are available in a rainbow of hues, from red and yellow to green. One characteristic of a crab apple is its small size.
How can you tell if crab apple is ripe?
If you want to know if a crab apple is ripe, you need to cut it open and examine the seeds inside. To know if a crab apple is ripe for eating, look for brown spots instead of white or green ones. When pressed with the hand, it should also feel soft. It's normal for a ripe crab apple to have a little sour flavour.
Taste of crab apple:
The moniker "crab apple" is aptly chosen to describe the sour taste of these fruits. It's well known that the darker red types are far more bitter than its lighter-coloured counterparts. Crab apples, even when perfectly ripe, don't have the same sugary flavour as fresh-picked apples.
Benefits of crab apple:
- Rich in antioxidants:
Antioxidants found in abundance in crab apples may protect cells from harm and slow down the ageing process by neutralising free radicals. Potentially useful for both health and beauty, crab apples have a higher polyphenol content than ordinary apples.
- Can be used in cancer treatment
Particularly potent anti-cancer effects have been observed in red crab apples. Researchers have shown that crab apples, which have been shown to have a pro-atopic effect, may also have an anti-proliferative effect by limiting the growth and spread of cancer cells.
Human cancer cell lines have been used to investigate the possible anticancer effects of bioactive compounds found in crab apple leaves.
- High in pectin:
Crab apples include a kind of fibre called pectin, which, when part of a healthy diet, can aid with glucose regulation, colon cancer prevention, probiotic growth, and cholesterol reduction.
- High in malic and tartaric acid
The fruit's characteristic tartness and sourness comes from these acids. Crab apples have been used in Ayurvedic medicine to cure a wide range of conditions, including gout, indigestion, inflammation, constipation, fever, and even cancer.
- Helps in pollination
Most crab apple trees blossom in shades of pink or white during the summer. These draw birds and bees, which help pollinate your other plants.