I have an unusual skill, one I normally keep hidden lest it engender jealousy, envy, hatred even. I can peel the skin off an apple all in one piece, unbroken, using just an ordinary household peeler. Here is one I did recently:
I invite you to attempt to break my record. Here are the rules of the competition.
Apple Peeling Rules
- Apples can be of any smooth-skinned variety and any colour except blue. (That’s a joke!)
- Apple size must be within 2 mm of a British Standard Supermarket size: 6 cm diameter, 6.5 cm height as measured from stem to calyx.
- There is no time limit to complete the peeling but the peel must be peeled in one fluid motion. Time off for refreshment or brow wiping will disqualify the Peeler.
- The peeler used must be hand-held (not mechanically driven) and can be of any of the following types: straight (fixed blades), Y, or swivel. Under no circumstances can anything very sharp-edged be used such as a surgical scalpel, Stanley knife, finely-honed paring knife, Swiss Army knife (with or without special peeling blade), chain saw, or any form of huntin’, shootin or fishin’ knife.
- Once separated, the peel must be laid alongside the peeled apple on a plain surface and photographed using a camera whose resolution is at least 16 megapixels. Additionally, the peel may be delicately dangled from the fingers of the proud Peeler, as above. Smirks are forbidden.
- The peel may be broken down into not more than four separate segments for the purpose of ascertaining its length using a straight-edged ruler. Curly rulers with bends to accommodate the curliness of the peel must not be used. Hint: you might find it easier to measure the length if you first store the peel in a cool dry place out of sunlight for 24 hours. As the skin dries so it becomes tougher and thus lends itself to a little straightening without breaking. Observers take note: excessive stretching is not allowed.
- Peeling can take place any time day or night but must be observed by at least two independent observers whose duties will be to ensure all rules are obeyed and to sign and countersign the photograph and verify the measurements. Pre-teen grandchildren and post-teen rugby players (or ex-rugby-players) are especially recommended as observers. The amazement on the faces of the pre-teen grandchildren is a wonder to behold plus it presents a challenge that will stay with them for the rest of their lives. Rugby players will raise a pint of beer in sober and solemn recognition of the feat. All teenagers will just scoff, trust me!
- The peel, when measured and photographed, can be eaten, stored away for future use as a Christmas decoration, or thrown away according to disposition and preference. If throwing away, please do so in accordance with the prevailing rules and regulations relating to organic waste in your country. The apple must be eaten forthwith else it will turn brown.
Your target is to reach the 100 cm length peel. Should you do so, send all documentary evidence to the UK National Apple Peeling Association and you will receive the coveted One Hundred Centimetre Certificate.
Postscript. After I wrote and posted this blog, I googled “apple peeling competition” to discover similar competitions. There are several in the USA, here and here, plus one I found in Japan where, get this, the longest peel was 1,098 cm, nearly 11 metres! But, the winner cheated. He, a nine-year-old schoolboy, used a paring knife. Try it with a regular peeler, buddy, just try it!