Real Food Mama

Musings about cooking, eating and everything in between.

Home Made Applesauce October 7, 2009

Filed under: Eating local,Garden Fresh,Home Economics,Recipe — realfoodmama @ 9:34 am
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Spiced Applesauce

Spiced Applesauce

Last week a friend of mine was kind enough to invite me to her aunt’s house in rural NM to pick apples. We arrived expecting to come home with a bag each, but then we looked at the trees. I think I ended up walking away with over 50 pounds of apples! I split them 50/50 between Jonathon and Winesap, as I wanted to make some applesauce as well as some pie filling.

We have been slow to get started on this project, as peeling, coring, cooking and canning 50 lbs of apples when you have a 2 year old boy in the house has proven difficult. We have completed one batch however and it was absolutely divine so I thought I would share the recipe with everyone, as well as the process for those of you who may be first time canners.

Spiced Applesauce

5 lbs of Jonathan apples (or a similar variety)
1 c water
1/4 c sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 – 1/4 tsp nutmeg
dash cloves

Peel and core the apples and place them in a large stock pot with the cup of water. Cook over very low heat for an hour to an hour and a half or until the apples are soft and can be crushed easily with a potato masher or a fork. Stir frequently!

When the apples have reached the desired consistency, add the sugar and spices and let it cook for another 10 minutes or so. Any longer and the flavors will get muddy. When the applesauce is finished, it is time to can it. At this point you have two choices: hot or cold?

The key to canning is to start with everything at the same temperature (ie, if you want to can the hot applesauce, you need hot canning jars and hot water). You can either heat the jars prior to canning or you can let the applesauce cool to room temperature, which could take half a day. I prefer to let the applesauce cool simply because it allows me to can in shifts.

Applesauce requires a simple water bath canning. Leaving 1/2 inch of headspace, fill your jars, removing any large air bubbles. After filling, tighten the lids and place in a water bath canner. Cover the jars with anywhere from 1/4 to a 1/2 inch of water in order to guarantee they remain covered during the canning process. Standard recipes call for 20 minutes in the water bath, however at 7000 feet I typically add an additional 10 – 15 minutes. The temperature for boiling water is marginally lower at this altitude, so you need to let the cans go longer. Standard adjustments are about 5 minutes for every 2000 feet above sea level. Remember – start timing when the water BOILS, not simply from when you place the jars in the canner.

Let the jars cool completely before removing them from the canner. I like to let them sit overnight. You can remove them while hot if you need the canner again, but you have to be very careful – a) they’re hot! and b) the temperature change from boiling to room temperature has been known to cause glass to crack – a risk frankly I don’t feel the need to take.

The next applesauce attempt is going to involve ginger and if it turns out I will post that recipe as well. Until then, Happy Eating!


7 Responses to “Home Made Applesauce”

  1. ValleyWriter Says:

    Perfect timing on this recipe! I just picked 20+ pounds of apples this past weekend and was thinking about doing some canning this week. Thanks for the great tips!

  2. Nicole Says:

    I can’t wait to go apple picking again. My first batch of apples are all gone – the next time I go I will have to try this! Thanks!

  3. Debi Says:

    We are picking apples this weekend–now that our girls are older, we pick more apples than we know what to do with…I think applesauce is definitely in our future!

  4. realfoodmama Says:

    I’m working on a batch of ginger applesauce today with the remaining apples – will post if it turns out well!

  5. tina Says:

    we go through an awful lot of applesauce in our home, it would be lovely to make our own. i have wanted to learn to can and this looks so nice, i think i can actually pull this off, i will be sure to try it! thanks for sharing it.

  6. […] 1 c organic unbleached all purpose flour 1/2 c buckwheat flour 1 1/2 TBSP aluminum free baking powder 1/2 tsp salt 2 eggs 1 c raw goats milk + 1/2 c goat kefir* 3 TBSP organic grass fed butter, melted 1 tsp vanilla extract (optional) 1/3 cup unsweetened (or lightly sweetened) applesauce – recipe here […]

  7. Sarah Says:

    I always freeze my applesauce. I love to eat it half frozen and slushy. I don’t use any sugar at all, just very ripe apples. Usually mix jonathans and yellow delicious.

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