Archived entries for apple

Slow Cooked Apple Butter

Its apple season again! Now that I don’t have the dread of the return to school, I love the fall! Its all about apples, pumpkins, crisp mornings and eating lots of food to “bulk” up for the winter. I got a good 10 lbs to pack on so I can survive my winter hibernation. Lets get started. Just kidding guys, this recipe won’t bulge your bellies as long as moderation is kept in mind AND you can now enjoy your apples GLUTEN FREE.**

apples are always gluten free, dummy.

Slow Cooked Apple Butter
makes 12 pins

20-25 lbs apples, skinned and cored
6 c. apple cider or juice (or 4 c. water)
4 c. sugar
1 Tbs cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp all spice

You can use whatever apples you want for this, but a sweet apple is best. The softer it is, like a Mac will cook faster. If you use something hard like honey crisp, you will just have to cook it a bit longer and use a blender to help break down the pulp. But just go with your bad apple self. There are no RULES.

Wash, skin and core your apples.

Put apples and cider in large 5 gallon cooking pot and bring to a boil. If you don’t have a pot that big, get one. If you can’t get one, use two pots. Or half the recipe. Or you can choose to go to another recipe where they don’t do everything in bulk.

Cook apples down on medium heat until they begin to form apple sauce, about 1-2 hours.

Add sugar and stir until sugar is melted. Add spices and stir. Bring heat down to low and cook uncovered to allow excess water to evaporate. Cook until the apple butter has thickened. Joy of cooking describes consistency as: sheeting from a spoon and suggest for testing, “putting a small quantity on a plate. When no rim of liquid separates around the edges of the butter, it is done.”

For my part, I cook for about 6 hours after I add the sugar, stirring occasionally to keep from burning to the bottom of the pot. I let it cool overnight and when I test it in the morning, its good to go.

Place in sterile jars and process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

Bavarian Apple Kuchen

If you multiply the deliciousness of this cake times the easiness of its preparation your calculator will explode (or your head if you’re really good at math.)  Just try it and see.  I DARE YOU.

Bavarian Apple Kuchen
serves 12

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. veg oil
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 c. flour
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 c. apples peeled and sliced.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, beat eggs with oil until creamy.  Add sugar, vanilla, flour, cinnamon, soda and salt. Mix well.  Batter will be stiff.  Fold in apples.  Pour in a greased 9×13 pan. Bake for 40-60 minutes until center tests done with a toothpick.


Applesauce Is Easy!

Fresh apples are one of the best parts of fall! Applesauce is super easy to make. Fresh apples are always so full of sugar, you doesn’t need any additives so it makes a perfect nutritious food especially for babies. We’re going to have 2 babies to feed this coming year, so I’m planning on canning at least 8 gallons.

You may be thinking, is making your own apple sauce worth it? Even though it is easy, it can be a bit time consuming to core and peel apples enough for a good batch.  Bon Appetite’s blog recently posted an article asking this same question.  Their answer was, yes, it is worth it for a superior taste. Although they say it costs more to make it for yourself.  This may be true if you buy apples in the best quality.  However, if you can get them for free, or find discounted bruised ones at your local orchard, you can save a lot of money.  Since you’re cooking them down, it doesn’t matter if there are some bad spots you need to cut out.

Since we get our apples for free from my Aunt Shirley’s apple trees, our sauce costs us basically nothing to make gallons and gallons of delicious, nutritious organic apple sauce!  Perfect for babies, children and adults alike!  Let’s get cooking!

Easy Applesauce

  • apples, as many as you want.  At least a couple pounds

Prep apples: Core and skin apples.  Cut out any brown spots.

Cook apples: Place apples in a large enough soup pot.  Fill pot with a couple inches of water.  If you’re only doing a small amount of apples, just an inch will suffice.  The water is just to keep the apples from burning the bottom of the pot before they’ve cooked down enough to make a sauce. Cook apples over medium low heat for 30-90 minutes, again depending on the amount of apples.  Just cook them until they’ve cooked down into a sauce.  Stir occasionally to keep it from burning at the bottom.

I never add any spices or sugar, but if you prefer, you can season to your taste and add some cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, or sweetener at this time

You can leave your apple sauce chunky or you can puree for a more smooth consistency.  For small babies, a smoother consistency is better.

Storage options:

  • Canning is a great way to store your applesauce.  Apples have enough acidity so you can safely can them in a water bath with no additives.  Just place your applesauce in a canning jar, seal using the proper sterilized canning lids and process in a boiling water for 20 minutes.
  • Freezing is also an easy way to store applesauce.  You can place in jars or bags and put in the freezer.  For quick baby food, you can freeze single serving portions in an ice cube tray.  Once they are frozen, remove from tray and transfer to a freezer bag.

Tender Meat For Tender Moments: Pork Tenderloin

Last winter, while grocery shopping, I found this pork tenderloin on super sale and it called out to me saying “Take me home!  I would make for the perfect candle lit romantic meal.”  (I never get freaked out by talking meat).  So I did, but I never got around to actually making it.  I’m still working on cleaning out my freezer and this pork tenderloin was at the top of this list.  After 12 months in the deep freeze, I finally hauled this little guy out and got to business.  Although, I’m sure it wasn’t as great as it would have been if I hadn’t neglected the poor thing for so long, but it did turn out very well and it was a very special meal full of special tender moments.

I’d never made a tenderloin before, so it was a bit of an adventure.  Although, I went maverick on it quite a bit, I based my recipe on this food network recipe with a few ingredient additions and substitutions. I used hard apple cider as the marinade and gravy base, since the apple flavor is such a traditional pork side-kick, although you can beer as the original food network recipe uses.

Tenderloin ready to be roasted

Roasted Pork Loin with Apple Cider Gravy

  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 22 oz. bottle Hard Apple Cider
  • 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 (3 1/2) pound boneless pork loin, tied
  • 1 Tbs butter, sliced into tsp slices
  • 1 large garlic clove sliced
  • sage leaves
  • 1-2 Tbs butter for roue
  • 1-2 Tbs flour for roue

Evening before or morning of meal, prepare your marinade: In a sauce pan, melt butter.  Saute onions and garlic in butter until nicely browned, about 5 minutes or so.  Stir in dried spices and allow to saute and toast for about 1 minute.  Add apple cider and mustard and bring to a boil.  Allow to cool.

Marinate your pork loin: Place your raw pork loin in a container.  Pour the prepared marinade over the pork and cover.  Refrigerate 8-24 hours.

Prepare your tenderloin for roasting: Remove loin for the marinade and set marinade aside.  Using a meat tenderizer or the flat side of a cooking handle of a random tool.  Hit the tenderloin a bit to make it flatten out a bit and to tenderize the meat.  Season the tenderloin on all sides with sea salt or kosher salt and pepper.  Place the butter and garlic slices along with some sage leaves, dried or fresh, along the center of the meat.

Truss your tenderloin:  Using string, tie your tenderloin up into a circular log.  I’ve never done this before, so I sort of just winged it.  I started wraping the string around one end, and then tied it off on the bottom of the log, or the opposite side of where the meat overlaps.  I tied a knot and then bring the sting forward, holding it in place.

Wrapping the string around the meat, I pulled the string behind where I was originally holding the string forward and pulled it around, securing the string in place.  I repeated this until I got to the end of the roast.

If you didn’t get that, which I can understand, check out this video demonstrating a slip knot method, skip to 54 seconds to see the process.  My garlic, butter and sage, did squeeze out a bit when tying up, but I just slipped as much of the filling under the string again as I could.

Brown Tenderloin: Using a skillet over medium-high heat, brown all sides of the tenderloin to prepare it for roasting.  This helps trap the juices inside the meat and keep your roast nice and juicy.

Roast Tenderloin: On a baking sheet, roast tenderloin at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads about 155-160.  Remove from oven and tent with aluminum foil until ready to serve.

Make Apple Cider Gravy: While the tenderloin roasts, prepare gravy.  Take half of your marinade and place in a sauce pan.  Bring to a gentle boil and reduce heat.  Meanwhile, mix together your roue paste by forking together an equal amount of butter and flour until it forms a paste.  When sauce is boiling, add the roue paste and stir occasionally until your sauce thickens to a gravy.  You can start out with just 1 Tbs of roue paste and add the second if the sauce is not thickening quickly enough.

Get Ready For Romance: Slice your tenderloin.  Serve your tenderloin with mashed potatoes and a salad or vegetable side.  Spoon your apple cider gravy over the tenderloin and your potatoes.  Get plates on table, Barry White on the stereo, light the candles and step into something a little more comfortable! This meal is definitely going to spice up your life.  Have fun!

Quick Apple Pie

What’s a chicken dinner without apple pie? I don’t know but the term “un-amurican” comes to mind. So here is the dessert I whipped up while my chicken was in the oven, and baked while we ate dinner. A quick apple pie!

For the dough I used my Grandmother’s no chill pie dough recipe, which besides being fast, is also super delicious. Here is an instructable, which shows the recipe and directions.

Click on box to start instructable and then click on steps at top to scroll through each one.

For the filling, I just peeled, cored and sliced about 8 apples. They were on sale at the corner store for $0.75 a lb, so I think all the apples cost me two or three bucks. Here is the recipe for the filling:

  • 6-8 apples peeled, cored and sliced
  • 1/2 -1 cup of sugar
  • 1 Tbs cinnamon
  • 1-2 tsp of rosewater
  • 3 Tbs sliced butter placed on top of filling (not mixed in)

The amount of sugar depends on the sweetness of the apples. My apples were naturally really sweet so I only added 1/2 cup. I love adding rosewater to apple pie because it compliments the apples so nicely yet in a very subtle way.

After a quick hand mixing of the sugar/cinnamon and rosewater into the apple slices, I placed the butter slices on the mixture and covered with the top pie crust layer. I cut a few slits into the pie crust to allow for the pie to breath and brushed with egg yolk.

I baked the pie for 30-45 mintes at 375 degrees or until golden brown. Then its ready to be served; we chose a la mode! A quick dessert with a quick dinner. We were all winners!

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