Wednesday, October 12, 2011

How 'Bout Them Apples?

It's fall in New England. Time to pick apples! The apple orchard we visited was perfect for young families. Not only was there easy picking, but there was also a bouncy house, mini tractors to ride, and a tiny maze made of barrels of hay. While I was distracted with picking which activity J would do first, my husband convinced me to
purchase the large bag for picking apples. Approximately 50 apples later we were faced with the inevitable question, what are we going to do with all these apples? We made one of my favorite sandwiches, grilled cheese with apples! There are lots of ways you can make this sandwich, butI like to use raisin bread, thinly sliced apples, a little bit of American cheese and a little bit of brie. YUM! Still had 49 apples left though so it was time to get cooking! Applesauce seemed like a good place to start. While I already know the gist of making applesauce, I decided to find a recipe that might give me a little inspiration on spice to add in. I didn't find much.The recipe I made added cinnamon and about 1/2 cup brown sugar. The end result was more of an apple pie filling than an applesauce. My husband and I made little apple pies by putting the warm filling into a mini graham cracker crust and topping with vanilla ice cream. Delicious! Not quite the healthy snack I wanted to feed my one year old though. I decided to try again. This time I skipped the sugar entirely. Here is the recipe I used:

3 lbs apples, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 slices of lemon
1 tsp of cinnamon
1 pinch of nutmeg
1 cup of water

Put all the ingredients in a pot, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir often while it's cooking. When the time is up, remove the lemon pieces. You can use an immersion blender or food processor if you want a smooth apple sauce but I prefer a chunky applesauce so I use a potato masher to smash the apples. I decided to freeze some to use later by pouring the applesauce
into ice cube trays. When they are frozen I remove them and store in freezer bags. Still about 30 apples left. Time to find some more cooking inspiration.

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