This week I got to do a little “apple picking” at Central Market’s Apple Festival, and it was so much fun! Central Market invited me to visit their annual two-week festival featuring the largest selection of apples in Texas. I got to bring home some apples to bake and decorate with for this sponsored post. It has been a rainy, fall-like week here in San Antonio, so I lit a candle, baked an apple cake, and decorated my kitchen table with apples in all shapes and sizes. Needless to say, I was in heaven!
Read on to see my trip to Apple Festival and how to create your own apple-filled table decor.
Central Market Apple Festival
Texas friends, you’re going to want to hit up your local Central Market by October 3rd to check out the Apple Festival. In addition to having hard-to-find heirloom apple varieties from New York, the Midwest, and Washington State, the store is filled with apple-flavored products from the bakery to the meat department. I picked up some apple, cranberry and walnut stuffed pork chops to bake for dinner and they were delicious!
There were apples as far as the eye can see! Central Market has helpful signs by each apple variety that describe their taste profile, what they pair well with, and whether they are best for eating raw or baking. I always enjoyed apple picking in the fall when we lived in Chicago, but it’s harder to come by here in Texas. I think heading to the Apple Festival is going to be our new Texas tradition.
So what does a blogger do with all the apples that they bring home? Photograph them, of course! It turns out these apples make for some beautiful photos! Here’s one of the many different varieties I picked out for my family to sample. They even had little crab apples which I thought would be fun to incorporate into an apple centerpiece.
My Favorite Apple Cake Recipe
The first thing I knew I wanted to make with my apples was my favorite apple cake. The recipe is from chef Marcus Samuelsson – I tore it out of a magazine years ago and have made it several times since. You can find his apple cake recipe here.
It is such an easy cake but turns out so fancy! It is baked in a springform pan and uses two apples – one chopped and mixed in the batter, and the other sliced and arranged on top. The recipe calls for Granny Smith apples, but I substituted in a variety called Cripsin that I found at the festival. They are great for baking and added a nice sweet flavor. The cake looks so pretty on a cake stand dusted with a little powdered sugar.
I made the cake the star of my apple-themed table and then surrounded it with more apples and greenery for simple and elegant fall table decor! I picked up a few bunches of inexpensive greenery like eucalyptus at the Central Market floral department to lay down the center of the table.
This is my favorite type of project – something that makes a big impact but takes literally no time to make. I just layered some apples and eucalyptus sprigs in one of my milk glass pedestal bowls. It doesn’t get any easier than that. Plus you can still eat or bake with the apples once you are done with the centerpiece since they are just layered in the bowl.
Here’s all you need to make your own apple centerpiece:
Small pedestal bowl (or similar)
4 large apples (or more depending on the size of your bowl)
Small crab apples
Start by adding the large apples to the bowl, then use the small crab apples to layer between them. Cut some sprigs of eucalyptus to fill in any gaps between the apples. You’re done!
I hope you get a chance to enjoy some fall apples while they are at their peak and visit the Apple Festival if you have a Central Market nearby. It certainly made it feel like fall in our home this week to have the smell of apple cake in the oven and a festive apple centerpiece on the table!
This post is sponsored by Central Market. All opinions are my own.