How 'bout them apples??? and lots of 'em!!!
For a shaky growing season with hail, Irene and tons of rain, the apples here in MA are superb! It's truly a delicious season. We went apple picking last weekend and brought home tons of apples (that's on top of the apples that I already had from my CSAs)....
I made an apple pie last week and then over this weekend, I made a big pot of apple sauce.
I used a vegan store bought crust for the apple pie. The filling consisted of a blend of Cortlands, Ida Reds, Empires and Macouns (my favorite)....peeled, cored and sliced thin, I mixed them with a bit of unrefined cane sugar, maple syrup, lemon juice, lemon zest, vanilla, whole wheat pastry flour to bind the juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, pinch sea salt and dotted it with Earth Balance vegan buttery spread. I brushed the top crust with a mix of almond juice and maple syrup and did a very light sanding w.unrefined cane sugar. Yum, a success!
But what I really wanted to talk about today is apple sauce and how easy it is to make at home, as well as how much more delicious home made apple sauce is than any store bought version.
I used about 1/2 peck, which is about 15 apples give or take a couple. Again, peel, core and this time cut into dice. I used the same mix of apples as the pie and used almost the same ingredients as the apple pie filling. Here are rough estimates:
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4-1/2 cup maple syrup (Grade B)
pinch sea salt
2 TBS vanilla powder (if you don't have vanilla powder, use vanilla extract)
2 TBS cinnamon (or more if you'd like :) )
1 cup water
Combine all of the ingredients on the stove over medium heat, cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer. Stir occasionally. After about 10-15 minutes, remove cover and allow to simmer w.cover off. It will begin to thicken up as the apples break down. After about 30 minutes, use a potato masher to mash the apples up to the consistency that you like.
Other than some putchkie work to peel, core and cut the apples, it's hands free, and the rewards are great.
So please consider going to get some local apples and make some homemade apple sauce...you will be very glad you did.