Friday, February 11, 2011

Impromptu Apple Butter

I went grocery shopping last week to stock up on some of the items we went through on The Great Pantry Challenge; mostly frozen veggies and root-cellar type veggies like carrots, potatoes, celery, onions, cabbage and a few varieties of winter squash.  There were some apples on sale so I tossed a 5-pound bag in my cart.  I found out why they were on sale.
The apples seemed pretty firm, but when you bit into them they were starting to get that icky “mealy” texture to them.  Rhiannon didn’t seem to mind, but I just can’t stand it.  So we went through about a quarter of them before I decided that they were going to end up being chicken food.
But wait, I just spent like five bucks on those apples!  And although I like my chickens, the cheapskate part of me wouldn’t let those apples be tossed to a bunch of backyard poultry.  So I got out the good ‘ol apple peeler, corer/slicer thingy, some cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar and a pot to cook them in.
Tossed the apples, spices, sugar & about a ¼ cup of water in the pot and let it cook for about ten minutes.  Got out my handy-dandy food-smasher and ended up with this:

I wasn’t going to bother canning it since it would just be immediately opened and eaten so I just put in in a mason jar & stuck it in the fridge.  There was exactly enough for a full quart.  We’ll have it with our oatmeal or on our toast in the morning. 

Don’t worry, the chickens didn’t get left out; the peels & cores went into the chicken bucket for their snack tomorrow morning.


  1. I get just as frustrated with "mealy" apples. AND I'm out of applesauce! I really need to put more away next year. Kicking myself for not putting in the apples trees years ago!

  2. I hear ya about putting in fruit trees. If we had done it the first year we bought the place we'd have bushels & bushels of apples by now.

    Plant now, think later! (although it doesn't always turn out thwe way you want it, but hey, such is life!)

  3. We are lucky we have an apple orchard a few miles north of us. I always buy a couple of bushels of his apples and a couple of the peaches he trucks in from the bootheel.

    Here is a hint to be even more frugal: Save the cores and peels, freeze until you have enough to fill say a 4 quart stock pot or larger add some water (apple cider or juice is better if you have it). Bring them to a boil and boil until you think you have all the goodies out of the apple leavings. Strain and make jelly; it is just super tasting. I had so many last fall I just canned several quarts of the juice and will make jelly when we are out.

    Then the mast that is left can go to the chickens.

    My trees aren't at the production stage either.
    The first thing anyone should put in on a new place is fruit trees, bushes, or shade trees.

    I wish we had but we were so busy starting up a small Holstein dairy that the trees got left behind.

    I have the start of a small orchard now and more trees coming this spring.

    A good tree for fruit that I don't spray at all, just pick and freeze is a sour cherry tree.

  4. We've got two sour cherry trees, only got three cherries from them last year, but they are only a few years old. Oh how I wish we could grow sweet cherries here.

    I've never made apple jelly before, but thanks for the tip about the cores / peelings gld, I'm going to freeze them the next time & try my hand at the jelly.