I tried baking some apples recently, something I’ve never done. These are a Granny Smith, 2 Galas, and what I think was a McIntosh. I cored and filled them with a cranberry mixture (minced fresh cranberries marinated with brown sugar and spices, mostly cinnamon). About midway through a 45-minute bake at about 330 degrees F I decided to cover them. They didn’t look like they were softening. Shortly thereafter, the McIntosh and Granny Smith split. The Galas remained relatively firm. In the end, I would say the McIntosh was overcooked, the Galas undercooked, and the Granny Smith was about right, even though it wasn’t pretty.
I had added maybe a half cup of apple cider to the dish they baked in which made a really good sauce. We ended up mixing all the apples and cranberries in the sauce leaving some distinct chunks, reheating it, and sprinkling granola on top. It was really good. I think somebody put vanilla ice cream on his. I wasn’t watching.
If I baked apples again, I would use all the same type, and not use McIntosh, it doesn’t hold its shape. For that matter, I wouldn’t use Gala because they didn’t get soft. The Granny Smith lacked a sweet&spicy apple flavor. I might try Rome or Winesap, if I can find them!
Creating a socket wasn’t the easiest thing I’ve ever done. Cutting out the stem was easy, but digging out the seeds and core took a skill I didn’t possess.
Baking. It looks like someone put pats of butter on them. I wasn’t watching.
I thought this was a good chart for which apples to use for what, from Washington State University Extension.