fallcolorCell Phone Smarts: 

Fall Food and Foliage

By Victoria Detmering

Now that the leaves have changed and there’s a chill in the air people are beginning to crave the best things about fall.

There are loads of smartphone apps that are interesting and provide an interactive, hands-on way to engage with the current season. All the following applications are free.

Taste of Home: This app is for all you cooks and bakers out there! The Taste of Home app (iPhone, Android) is not just  simply a seasonal recipe app, but much more. Each recipe contains a photo with simple step-by-step instructions, nutritional facts and even cooking tips from readers. It’s almost impossible not to successfully cook a favorite dish. You can even save your favorite recipes, browse them by course and cooking style, and also categorize by holidays. One of the best and most unique features on this app is the section where you are able to look up what fruits and vegetables are in season according to where you live. The list also includes recipes with those locally grown fruits and veggies.

There are even recipe showdowns! You be the judge of what you think is the best recipe of the season. The Holiday Favorites section is the best! They have the most frightening sweet treats that will be perfect for Halloween, which just around the corner!

Locavore: Another interesting app that is perfect for the fall season is Locavore (iPhone, Android). It was rated the No. 1 app for Foodies by AppCraver. This app is based on your location and searches for in-season, local food. It finds farmers’ markets in your area and will let you know what is currently in season, as well as recipes using those items.

This app is also educational as it teaches you about food that is in season and who produces it. It allows you to easily post on Facebook and Twitter what you ate and the farmers’ markets from which you purchased your goods. It is a great way for others to find out more information about your local area and you.

vTree: Even though many of the trees have lost their colorful leaves in the Northeast, vTree (iPhone, Android) is a cool app for leaf peepers, but also offers other uses. This app is for all the nature lovers out there who would love to learn more about what Mother Nature has to offer. It was created by Virginia Tech and contains information on over 960 woody plants across the country with thousands of images of leaves, flowers, fruit, twigs and bark. You can narrow the species list to your location. Want an even more condensed list? All you have to do is ask a few questions about a certain plant that you are curious about. Feel free to send a question you have to the tree expert from Virginia Tech who will help answer your question. It is a great app for all ages for those interested in learning about the nature that surrounds them.

Now that you have successfully downloaded all three of these apps, go out and bake! Explore! Be a part of the season and all that it has to offer!