April 19, 2014

Elyria
Sunny
52°F
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15 Minutes: Meet apple grower Laurie Grobe

Laurie Grobe
Age: 44
Lives: Amherst Township
Pursuit: Apple grower — wife of Allen Grobe — who runs a stand at the Apple Festival and another on state Route 113 west of Elyria in Amherst Township.

What’s the big news in apples this fall?

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We had a freeze in April after we had the early spring in March, so the apples bloomed early. We lost quite a bit of fruit this year —we won’t notice it on the retail end, but on the wholesale end we won’t pack as many apples this year.

What varieties do you have?

Our Cortlands did real well. Our red and yellow delicious did real well. We have a few McIntosh, but they got hurt quite a bit. The ones we have are beautiful. The Romes are wonderful. We have Honeycrisp.

What’s your favorite apple?

My favorite apple is Fuji, and those faired pretty well.

How long have you been working and dealing with apples?

I’ve been married to Allen Grobe — and he’s fifth generation—and I’ve been married 20 years, so I’ve “only” been working with apples for 22 years.

Is there a secret to an apple pie?

Yes, the secret to an apple pie, I think, is that you cut and peel your apples, mix them with the sugar first, let that sit and that builds the juices up, then make your crust and put the apples in. A lot of people make the pie crust first then whip their apples up and put them in. Mix your apples, too. Always mix your varieties.

Do you taste them individually?

No, they blend.

Do you have any hobbies?

Oh, I like to camp, ride my four-wheeler, I do ceramics and I like to sew.

Who’s in your family?

My husband is Allen, and our sons, Brett and Keith.

Chronicle photographer Chuck Humel shines the spotlight on the people of Lorain County each week. Know someone worthy of 15 Minutes? E-mail chumel@chroniclet.com.