When I throw a brunch party, I always end up looking for an extra side dish that takes little time and space to prepare and won’t add a lot of items to my shopping list. At least in the fall and winter, I often settle on a big platter of quartered apples or pears. Easy, inexpensive, and pleasing to both light and heavy eaters, that platter of apples or pears never has a single piece of fruit remaining by the end of my brunches.
Simple as this “dish” may seem, there’s one trick to ensuring that the apple platter is a success: defeating the fruit’s propensity to brown when left out in open air.
To win against oxygen’s unappealing browning effect, simply pour some orange juice into a shallow bowl and dip each apple quarter into the juice on its way to the serving platter, coating all exposed sides. If you don’t keep a bottle of OJ in the house, pick up a few oranges and squeeze them for juice. (Sure, your apples will have a slight orange flavor, but apples and oranges taste pretty great together.)
Then simply let your platter of fruit out on the table without fear–your apples will stay bright and fresh for the duration of your party.
Make It! is a series where I share smart tips for prepping, making, and presenting food in the easiest possible way. See tips from previous columns, like how to keep rust off your muffin tins and lettuce fresh in the fridge.