Saturday, December 01, 2007

cran-apple butter

my apple palate: applesauce,
apple butter and cran-apple butter

With a new baby, I didn't think I had the time or energy to make apple butter this year. I started to make a small batch in September, but never got around to canning it. I ended up just throwing it out after two weeks in the fridge. So sad. But luckily my Swiss friend, Irene, liked mine so much last year that she got the recipe from me and made some last month. She gave us a pint and we polished it off in under a week. That settled it: I had to make apple butter asap.

8.5 kilos cooking down

I picked up about 8.5 kilos (19lbs) of Elstar and Boskop apples at the farmer's market (they thought I was crazy). This filled my huge stockpot to the brim (as shown above). After a little cooking, I processed the apples through a food mill by hand to make applesauce (next year, I'm definitely getting the KitchenAid food mill attachment!). I saved a quart of this for eating and plopped the rest into my 7 quart dutch oven, filled to the brim again. I added sugar and spices then cooked it to about half its volume over the next 12 hours or so. I ended up with 16 cups of apple butter, which I promptly canned.

16 cups of yum

I also did a cranberry variation this year. I made a batch of my Thanksgiving cranberry sauce, strained it, then processed it through the food mill. I mixed this with equal volume apple butter to generate 6 cups of cran-apple butter. On the strength of this experiment, I think I'll try some other multi-fruit combos next year, like raspberry or apricot. Now I just need to make some bread to eat with it.
I used these instructions for making the apple butter. Here's my cranberry sauce recipe:
12 oz cranberries
1 cup sugar
1 orange, zest and juiced
1 large pear, chopped
1 large apple, chopped
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground cloves
pinch of nutmeg

In medium saucepan, place cranberries, sugar, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes or until berries begin to pop. Add orange zest and juice, pear, apple, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. You can make a couple days ahead of time, store in fridge until ready to use.


Aluwicious said...

YUM!!! I'm going to use this blog as a reference for the day I decide to learn how to can:)

Margaret said...

What a beautiful autumnal colour palette. And they all look so smooth and creamy.

Jess said...

That looks really yummy! I was wondering if you have ever made sourdough bread before. I want to try it, but I'm a little apprehensive. I was wondering if you have any success with it before.

Tanya said...

Welcome Jess. I haven't made sourdough before. Although I come from San Francisco, sourdough isn't my favorite. But now that you mention it, I am curious to try since wild yeast is so fascinating. OK, it's settled - I'm walking into the kitchen now to start my starter. This is going to take a minimum of 7 days, assuming all goes well. I just read through the instructions and I'm scared! Wish me luck.

jess said...

Good luck!! : )

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