Homemade applesauce is one of those things that makes you wonder, after you whip up a batch, why more folks don’t make it. It truly is one of the easiest and most delicious treats-snacks-condiments-ingredients you can make from scratch, and it doesn’t take much time at all. And, most importantly, it makes you a more contented, well-rounded individual with shinier hair, a slimmer waist, a sharper mind, and a more pleasant disposition.
Okay, so not necessarily on those last few items.
But it is really easy to make!
And oh, the things you can do with homemade applesauce. Here’s just a slight smattering.
* Make silver dollar applesauce pancakes. Whoa. The flavor.
* Make muffins like these. Tremendously good!
* Top cooked pork chops, as in this recipe. Just sub applesauce for the large apple chunks. Applesauce and pork chops go together. Just ask Peter Brady!
* Substitute apple sauce for the oil in many baked goods. It’s a healthy choice, baby.
* Spoon warm applesauce over vanilla (or caramel!) ice cream and sprinkle with a little cinnamon. To die for!
* Make regular French Toast and top with a big spoonful of applesauce.
* Eat a small bowl of chilled applesauce for breakfast, or as a side dish for lunch or dinner.
Homemade applesauce for president!
You need to start by peeling a bunch of apples. Sometimes I just hurriedly peel them, but sometimes I start at the top and peel in one continuous coil, and if I make it to the bottom without the coil breaking, everything in my life is going to turn out okay…or I’m the grooviest, coolest person in the world…or something like that.
You do that too, right? Like right before you try to toss something into a trash can, and you tell yourself if you make it, you’re the winner of everything? And if you miss it, everything in your life will implode?
Great. I’m so glad you do that, too!
You basically need all the apple flesh you can get!
Oh, and on that note: You can use whatever apples you want. Some folks have specific varieties of apples they like to use when they make applesauce, but since I often just use an assortment based on what I have in my fridge, I’ve conditioned myself to believe the variety of apples doesn’t really matter. I used a mix of Honey Crisp and Macintosh. I think.
And, for glorious sweetness and deeper color, add half a cup of brown sugar. You can use regular sugar instead, but I love the color the darker sugar brings to the equation. You could also sub some maple syrup for some of the sugar if you want to go that direction. Also, you can add more sugar to make it much sweeter if that makes your skirt fly up. The world is your applesauce!
Next, add a little cinnamon. This is totally optional, too! You can leave out spices if you’d rather just have the natural apple flavor by itself. Or you can up the spices and add ground cloves, ground nutmeg, or a little allspice. You’re the boss with applesauce.
And while we’re on the subject: I never have added butter to my applesauce. Many people do. But I don’t. It’s delicious if you do. But it’s delicious if you don’t, and butter-free applesauce is much more pure and holy. And if you’re looking to use applesauce as a substitute for oil/fat in muffins and other baked goods, the presence of butter kind of defeats that purpose.
Write this day on your calendar. It’s probably the only time in history I’ll be suggesting that butter not be used.
Now, you can take one of two approaches with the texture of the applesauce: You can use a potato masher (or forks or whisks) to break up the apples by hand, which will leave you with a more textured and chunky applesauce, or you can puree it to make it smooth. I prefer the latter, because that most closely resembles my childhood experience with applesauce, and however I ate things as a child is exactly how I want to eat things as adults. Absolutely, positively no exceptions.
Not that I’m particular or anything.
To puree the applesauce, I transfer all the contents of the pan to a food processor. You can use a blender or food mill, too—whatever your poison. Just keep in mind that if you use a blender especially, and if you puree the applesauce while it’s still hot as I did, you should do it in smaller batches to avoid the hot applesauce spraying everywhere.
This has been a public service announcement.
Here’s the handy printable. This quantity yielded about 6-7 cups of applesauce, so you can halve it…or triple, quadruple, or quintuple it if you’ve got a pot big enough! Just adjust the cooking time to ensure the apples are tender and you’re good to go.
Have fun, my friends!
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 25 Minutes
6 pounds Apples, Peeled, Cored, And Cut Into 8 Slices1 cup Apple Juice Or Apple Cider Juice Of 1 Lemon1/2 cup Brown Sugar, Packed1 teaspoon Cinnamon, More Or Less To Taste Optional Ingredients: Nutmeg, Maple Syrup, Allspice, Butter Preparation Instructions
Combine all ingredients in a large pot and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes.
Carefully puree in a food processor or blender (don't fill too full; split into two portions if needed) until smooth.
Store in the fridge and serve by itself, over pork chops, over ice cream, over pancakes...or any place where applesauce is needed!
Posted by Ree on October 16 2013
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