Monday, July 26, 2010

Homemade Apple Sauce

Or "happy sauce" as we used to call it when the kids were little. Canning has never been my favorite thing. Yes, I like being able to look into the pantry and admire my colorful handiwork. But you have to do it at the hottest damn time of the year. Boiling a huge pot of water on the stove, when it's over 80 degrees, is not pleasant. But these apples aren't gonna can themselves. And I have a tree full of them, this year.

I canned 9 pints of applesauce and I haven't even made a dent in the amount of apples I have. There will be lots more apple sauce canning in this girl's future. Here is the way that I make it:

(the easy way)

Take the biggest saucepan you have and fill it 1/4 full of water. Add 1 Tbs. of lemon juice. Now fill the rest of the pan up with apples, chopped into quarters with the stems and seeds removed, along with any blemishes. The apple skin is very nutritious so we are not going to peel the apples. Now heat the pot full of apples until the water boils. Lower the heat to a simmer. Cook and stir until all the apples are soft and are falling apart. Remove from heat. Now for the fun part. Take your food mill and place it over a bowl. Ladle in some of the cooked apple mixture and crank away. What ends up inside the bowl is your apple sauce. Discard the skin that remains inside the mill. I saved mine to feed to the chickens. You're going to have LOTS of sauce, so have a few bowls ready. Once you've processed all the cooked apples, return the sauce to the pan and heat. Stir in enough sugar to sweeten. I used 2 cups. I also added a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Ladle the hot apple sauce into your hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/2" head room. Process pints for 20 minutes and quarts for 25 minutes.

Just like most things, homemade apple sauce is far superior to that which you buy at the grocery store. Enjoy!

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