Tuesday, October 23, 2012

recipe: applesauce

I'm not going to lie. Making apple sauce is a pain in the ass.

That said, homemade apple sauce is far and away better than the store-bought stuff. So I think it's worth the trouble. But just once a year.

When Tony and I were in Ohio this month, we went to an orchard near my parents' house, and I bought a half bushel of "seconds" apples for $7.95, which comes out to about 33 cents a pound (!). Most of my apples had small bruises on them, being "seconds" and all, so they're perfect for making apple sauce.

In case you were wondering, this is what a half bushel looks like (minus one apple, which I ate):

The key to preparing a half bushel of apples? An apple machine. This is a fantastic invention. You skewer the apple, turn the crank, and the little mechanism peels, cores and slices the apple all at the same time.

Apple machine, I couldn't have done this without you.


  • Apples

Peel, core and slice apples. 

Put apples in a pot (with a small amount of water to avoid scorching). Cook over medium-low heat. Stir frequently. Occasionally use a potato masher to break the apples down.

For small batches, cook for 30 minutes to an hour. Larger batches may need up to two hours.


Note: Since I had so many apples, I put the first few apples in the pot, then turned on the heat. As I cut up the remaining apples, I just added them to the pot. It took me about an hour to cut up all of the apples, then another hour for everything to break down.

Note: You can leave chunks in your apple sauce. Chunky apple sauce will not take as long to cook as smooth apple sauce. I kept mine chunky.

Note: You do not need to add sugar to applesauce. Choose sweet apples, and the fruit will provide all of the sweetness you need.

Note: You can add cinnamon to taste. My mom has added some Red Hots candies to batches, which gave the applesauce a cinnamon flavor and, as a bonus, turned it pink.

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