For those of you that have been making your own applesauce since your babies were old enough to try solid food, just skip over this post. This is not for you. For the rest of us who think being able to make your own applesauce is a time luxury, stay right here. For years, I have dreaded buying applesauce in the stores. I know how easy it is to make it, but the convenience of those single serve packages kept luring me back in. It is far too simple to grab one of those suckers and throw it in the lunch box.
I am pretty picky about what applesauce I buy. The ones with all the extra goop (HFCS, sugar, etc) are worthless, you should just go buy a candy bar. Real apples, just apples, now that’s something to get excited about. Apples are crazy cheap right now, so this is the perfect time to save yourself some cash and make your own.
These are some of the apples I had left over from my tree picking experience a little over a week ago. We are blessed to have some apple trees right behind our house. They don’t belong to us, so I don’t freely partake at my leisure. However, HEP helped the farmer who own them, cut some weeds away from his trees and in his German way, told HEP that he could pick a bunch. Um, yes, I will oblige.
They aren’t the prettiest apples and they are a bit tart, but they made a heck of a good apple butter last week and today, a killer applesauce.
I have to chuckle at many recipes that call for “lbs” of apples. Does anyone really weigh their apples at home to ensure they are using the appropriate weight? Probably not, I used 10 apples – do not ask me how many pounds that is. Let’s just say they are medium sized apples. Not too big and not too small.
So, let me point out another reason why I have kicked myself for many years buying commercial applesauce. No skin. You see, I have this thing about nutrition and I know that the majority of the awesomeness, that makes the apple the powerhouse that it is, lies in the skin and directly under it. I once knew a Physician who would eat the peel of the apple and then throw the rest away. He knows the secret. Commercial applesauce does not contain the peel of the apple and most of the recipes that you will find tell you to peel your apples. That makes me very sad. You’re throwing away the best part of the apple. Not this girl- nope, peel stays on.
I will say that HEP was the skeptic with this and I didn’t have him convinced until the end. I also made the purchase of my high powered blender (dare I say the name – you all know what it is anyway) worth it. Okay, it’s a Vitamix and I’m a total groupie.
Instead of cooking the apples first, I pulverized them and then cooked them. That big box that my Vitamix is plugged into is my transformer, the big daddy. Otherwise, I would fry the motor, which would make me cry, so I deal with this on my counter.
I will say that I made applesauce last week and I wanted a raw applesauce. My kids didn’t go for it. It was too raw, so this was attempt #2.
I added a little water to get each batch going and then I blended until the peels were gone. My sister would have told me to leave the seeds and everything in there, but I decided to core them. I needed to blend two batches with the number of apples.
This is the pureed apples with the sugar, maple syrup, water, and lemon juice. I let it boil for about 15-20 minutes for two reasons. I wanted to get some of the moisture out and I wanted to kill anything that may have been lurking in the peels. These are wild apples that are not treated with anything, so I wasn’t too worried about pesticide residue, only dirt!
While that was boiling away, I washed up some jars. I didn’t go full canning on this because we’re going to eat it quickly. This will go in the fridge, but these jars make it more manageable than putting it in a big plastic container.
I hope you try to make some this weekend, it will be worth it.
- 10 Medium apples, cored - peels left on
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup raw sugar
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 cup water
- Clean and core apples
- Place in a high powered blender with water (might need to be done in two batches)
- Transfer to a medium sized dutch oven or pot and add sugar, maple syrup, and lemon juice
- Bring to simmer and allow to simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Allow to cool slightly and transfer to container
- Will last 2 weeks in the refrigerator