Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Chunky Harvest Applesauce

As Promised an Applesauce tutorial for homemade applesauce. This is a chunkier applesauce. You can add more or less seasonings depending on your taste, and you can puree it to make it super smooth, or do a rough mash with a potato masher or ricer.
If you are making baby food, omit all sugar and seasonings. Just boil them with water and press through food mill or use immersion blender until smooth.
This is a smaller batch recipe and makes about 4 cups (8 servings). Perfect for a family dinner. Will keep in the fridge for about a week. Or you can put it in a ziplock, press out the air and freeze it for up to 6 months.

Step 1- Peel and chop 6 medium to large apples of your choice. If you do not already have one, I HIGHLY recommend an apple peeler.
I used my Honeycrisps, as they are firmer sweeter apples. You definately want to use a firmer apple, like cortland or Honeycrisp. Empire or Galas would be OK as well.
If you have a coarser, softer apple, such as a Red or golden delicious, mix it with the firmer crisper apples for a better textured applesauce, otherwise you will end up with grainy Mush.
If you use Granny Smiths, pair with a sweeter apple, or you will have to use extra sugar. Granny Smiths are really tart, especially if they are not fully ripe.

STEP 2- Add about 1 1/4 cups water
1/2 cup white sugar and 2 TBSP brown sugar.
You can add more or less sugar depending on the sweetness of your apples. Mix everything together. The sugars will pull out the juices in the apples, and will mix with the water and make a thick syrup that the apples will boil in.

STEP 3- Add your spices.
1 tsp ground cinnamon. 1/2 tsp ground cloves, 1/2 tsp allspice, pinch of nutmeg and a pinch of dried ginger. You can add more or less spices depending on your taste.
Start small and at the end if you want it spicer, add more spices. A little bit goes a long way and if you put too much in you will have some seriously spiced applesauce. (learned from experience)Mix well until all the apples are coated.

Put a lid on your pan and set to High Heat. Let boil for 3 minutes. Stir and set heat to medium-low and boil for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Your apples will get transparent. Take a masher and start to mash. Apples shold mash somewhat easily. If they are still a little tough to mash, boil a little longer.
Once apples reach a desired consistence, remove from heat and mash until you have the consistency to your liking. I like my applesauce a little chunkier.
TA-DA!! Easy homemade applesauce the whole family will enjoy.
You can make a bigger batch and can it.
6LB pressure for 10 minutes.
You can use this in crepes, top Ice Cream with it, add it to your oatmeal. Top it with a streusel mixture and bake it for an apple crisp or make it as a turnover filling.
Bon appetit!
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