Remember when I told you guys about how I went apple picking and ended up with an absurd amount of apples? Well here’s what I did with most of them. I MADE APPLE BUTTER. This recipe is pretty much fool proof and you probably already have the ingredients stashed somewhere in your pantry.
I’ve seen plenty of variations, but this is how I like it. I like to let the natural flavor and sweetness of the apples to shine, so I don’t like to use as much sugar as other recipes call for. I also like the taste that the honey and orange add. Using apple cider instead of water gives a deeper and stronger apple flavor.
5 pounds of apples, peeled and chopped
2.5 cups apple cider
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
zest of half an orange
2 tablespoon fresh orange juice
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
First, core and peel about 5 lbs worth of apples. Then chop them into chunks.
Then combine the apples with the other ingredients and cook covered over medium heat until the apples are soft.
Next, use an immersion blender to puree the apples until smooth. A regular blender works too.
At this stage you’re going to put it into a 275 degree oven and bake it, uncovered, for a few hours until it has darkened and reduced to your desired thickness. About 3 hours should work. Check and stir every 30-45 minutes. It should simmer a little but not boil and splatter. If it does, reduce the temperature a little.
Once it’s all done you can store it in airtight containers for up to a week. Better yet, jar it and store it for later or give it as a gift.
Here’s a bonus breakfast non-recipe-recipe for any left over apples you may have.
Make a hole in the apples and fill them with a mixture of your favorite granola cereal, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Throw in some raisins if you want. Top with a pat of butter. Put 1/2 cup of apple cider and a couple of bay leaves in a baking pan with the apples. Bake at 275 until the apples are tender and the granola topping is lightly browned.