After three pies and 2 batches of apple butter I still had about 15lbs of apples left.
Next time I won't pick so many.... (But it could be argued that it worked out for the better! Shhhhh....)
So I sat down with my lovely lady Lesley and got a'peelin'! The last of the apples were allotted for apple sauce, another canning first. I got out the handy dandy Joy of Cooking book and took a peek at what making apple sauce entailed. It's probably the simplest recipe I've seen when it comes to canning. Apples, washed and cored (peeled if you want), boil 'em, mash 'em and stick 'em in a can! I tweaked it a bit:
~7lbs apples (I used McIntosh)
Brown Sugar (optional)
- Prepare an anti-browning solution. (Either lemon juice or dissolved vitamin C tablets or a specifically purchased anti-browning agent.)
- Wash, peel and core apples. Cut into quarters. Place into anti-browning solution. Repeat till all the apples are prepared.
- Prepare jars for canning. See here for sterilization directions.
- Drain apples from anti-browning solution.
- In a large non-reactive saucepan, place apples and 1 1/2 cups of water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Stir occasionally and skim off excess foam into a separate bowl to discard.
- Mash apples with a potato masher, emersion blender or transfer apples in batches to a blender to puree. (Transfer back puree to the saucepan afterwards.)
- When the apple sauce is a consistency you like, add cinnamon and/or sugar to taste. (I added ~2tsp cinnamon and ~1/8 cup brown sugar.) Stir to combine and bring back to a boil.
- It's canning time! Fill hot jars with boiling applesauce leaving a 1/2 inch headspace. (Remove the funnel, wipe the rim with a damp paper towel or clean damp cloth. Place a warmed lid on top. Place a screwband on the jar, then grasp the jar with the jar tongs. Tighten the screwband to ONLY fingertip tight. This literally means using your finger tips only, tighten the screwband until there is enough resistance that it stops.) Place in waterbath canner. Repeat.
- Process apples sauce for minimum 15 minutes. Check your altitude though! Higher altitudes need longer! Add 5 minutes if you're 1000m above sea level and so on.
- Remove apples sauce from the canner and leave to cool completely. I usually leave mine for 24 hours before handling.
- Check the jars have sealed. If you can't lift off the snap lids with your fingers, they've sealed! Yay! Label and store in a cool dark place.
My my my. What an apple-y success!
Now what to do with a metric ton of apple sauce? Well I made the most amazing applesauce and bacon pancakes.... So good.
But that story's for another day! ;)
The Half-Assed Hobbyist