One week ago, I was doing this:

That would be picking organic apples at an orchard near my grandparents’ cabin in West Texas.  The owners generously shared their apples with us, even though we were “Yankees.”

The golden delicious apples weighed down our checked bags a bit, but they made it back to St. Louis with only a few bruises.

I spent the morning chopping apples for applesauce, which is pretty much the easiest thing in the world to make.  Just wash the apples, cut them into chunks (I leave the skins ON), toss them in a pan with a little bit of water to get things going, and cook for awhile (20-30 minutes).  Voilà!  Beautiful chunky applesauce.

Apples are naturally sweet, so unless you’re using really tart apples, don’t add sugar.  Change things up a bit by adding a dash of cinnamon to your sauce.

I don’t know how many apples I started with (a lot!) but it cooked down to exactly 7 pints, which I processed in a water bath.  Handling the canning by myself was enough work without photographing the process.  I also intended to add cinnamon to some of the jars, but forgot amid the mild chaos.

Properly canned applesauce will keep for quite awhile without taking it space in the fridge or freezer.  See the canning instructions I followed here.

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