Not including local apples in some fashion in an October menu is highly suspect, a gross omission from my point of view. I liken it to forgetting to buy the wine for a dinner party – not advisable. Apples are to October as are golden red leaves to sugar maples.
I made this big batch to take to a pot luck; it serves 12-16 people. Like an apple, the recipe can be divided in half or quartered, depending on your needs. I’ve been making this apple salad every fall for almost 30 years. It works well in so many Autumn menus, up through Thanksgiving Day.
I selected Prime Gold, Gala and Empire apples. Red and green Galas are always great in salads, the red Empires would lend a pleasing sweet and tart crunch, and the green Prime Golds flavor would complement the other two.
The cream cheese mixture may be made up to 48 hours in advance, omitting grated ginger. The salad, including ginger, may be made up to 4 hours in advance of serving. Before serving, stir and garnish. The dressing would also double as a delicious fresh fruit dip.