We didn't ever pick up the "drops" ourselves, to the best of my knowledge. Instead, my mother would order a bushel or two of "Macs" and Cortlands. The orchard folks would fill these large wooden boxes with apples that had dropped to the ground. This meant, of course, that the apples weren't perfect, but they were fine for our purposes and they were less expensive.
And what a treat it was to go to the orchard to pick up our apple order! The boxes of apples were stored in a large room in the barn, to keep them cool and in good condition, I suppose. Oh, the aroma inside that barn! The scene looked a little bit like the photo below, but the boxes were much larger.
|Photo from Pixabay|
When we got our apples home, my mother made lots of applesauce to can, and I'm sure she made some apple crisps and apple squares as well -- she wasn't much of a pie baker -- but many of the apples were just to eat out of hand. The Cortlands, with their bright red outsides and crunchy white flesh, were my very favorites. I think there may have been some years when my parents ordered more apples just before Thanksgiving, but I can't remember for sure (although it makes sense).
The apples and the treats made from them were marvelous -- but they just can't compare to the sweetness of that apple scented memory!