Photos, Recipes and Article By Christi Milan

   The arrival of autumn evokes the memories of cozy fires, cool nights, falling leaves and the wonderful scents of the season. Swirling in the air are fragrances of cinnamon, all-spice and cloves. Autumn’s crop of fruits and vegetables offers a variety of flavors. Some of autumn’s delights are cranberries, squash, persimmons, pomegranates and apples. I believe nothing says autumn like apples. Apples are used to make a variety of great tasting beverages. One apple beverage that most people are familiar with is apple cider. Apple Cider can be heated and spices added for this warm fall beverage. A twist on an old favorite is Apple soda. Apple soda is easy to make homemade and is gaining popularity in the market. Cinnamon Apple Infused Vodka is another drink that has gained popularity through mass producing of flavored vodka’s.

   Apple’s prime season is fall, so different varieties are available for snacking, baking, or to put into drinks. Apples are full of fiber, offer antioxidants, fat and cholesterol free, low in calories and are rich in vitamin C. I guess you could say they are so healthy you can feel it to your core. Yes, apple humor. I just had to. Laughter is good medicine.

The seasons change and the North State takes on a different ambiance. Autumn has come to the mountains and valleys of the North State. The refreshing chill is welcomed after summer’s hot dominance. Sweaters, blankets and slippers are welcomed into our closets and drawers once again. The trees display the red, orange and yellow hues of the season. Leaves swirl in a sweet summer- fall dance. Things begin to slow and nature takes a big sigh. Now is the time to kick back on the porch and put your feet up. Take this time to enjoy the beginning season and to contemplate about the summer. Make a toast to yourself with a fresh apple beverage. You deserve it.

Apple Soda

1 cup Apple Juice

3 cups carbonated water

1 cup apples chopped

Lemon (optional)

Spice, cinnamon, all-spice, liquorice (optional)

In a saucepan pour apple juice and add small chunks of apple, reduce to syrup in about 30 to 40 minutes. Allow to chill and strain out apple chunks. Pour in carbonated water or Perrier and mix.  According to your taste you may add optional ingredients such as lemon or spices of your choice. This recipe is great for a detox too!

See more great apple recipes on our recipes page.