Apple Butter

apple-butter

Autumn, the years last loveliest smile. Were already half way through the season but it really hasn’t felt much like fall here in N.E Ohio in the last month with the unusually warmer weather we’ve been having, hey I’m not complaining though!Β  This week, the temperature finally started to dip back into the lower 60s with heavy clouds and even a little rain fall here and there. The crisp air is comforting as I warm up around a fire pit with a hot hazelnut latte from Starbucks in my hand and watch as the wind throws the leaves onto the ground. The sound of leaves crushing beneath my brown leather boots is a lovely reminder that its okay to let things go and to just breathe and have patience for whats to come in the near future.

I didn’t have much opportunity this fall to work with the seasonal produce. I finally made time to swing by my favorite fruit stand up near my Grandparents home in Port Clinton and grabbed a heavy bag of the best looking Gala apples a girl could pick. The first thing that came to my mind that I haven’t made before in the past was Apple butter. Of course I made apple pie as well, however that recipe is one everyone should already have.

This smooth, puree that spreads better than butter is super easy to make and goes great on pancakes or even a piece of toast. Heck, it’s even good enough to eat it off a spoon like peanut butter! However you choose to enjoy it, this recipe is worth making. If you’re looking for gift ideas to your friends and family for the holidays, which are just around the corner, why not make a large batch and can it up in a fun gift basket with pancake mix and other breakfast essentials; Just a fun idea!

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Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Total Time: 50 Minutes

Yield: Makes 4, 8oz Jars

Mise en place:

-8 Gala Apples, peeled, cut in medium chunks, seeds removed

-1 Cup Apple Cider

-1 1/2 Cups Granulated Sugar, divided

-3/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

-1/4 Teaspoon Allspice

Method of Prep:

-Bring apples, cider and 1/2 cup sugar to a boil in a dutch oven over high heat. Cover leaving lid slightly ajar, and boil 20 minutes or until apples are tender and most of the liquid had evaporated; Stir every 5 minutes.

-Process cooked apples and cooking liquid in a blender until smooth. Return mixture to dutch oven. Stir in cinnamon, allspice and remaining 1 cup of sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat.

-Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered stirring often, 15 minutes or until thickened.

-Cool about 45 minutes. Spoon into airtight containers and refrigerate up to 2 months or freeze up to 6 months.

**Mix in 3 Tablespoons of Pumpkin puree to make a pumpkin apple butter!

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Cinnamon Apple Chips

I have been beyond busy, which would indicate my lack of blogging. I just got back from what started out as a wonderful and much needed vacation back home to Ohio to visit family, and see a dear friend of mine get married. This fun time away from work ended terribly due to the hurricane making her move though the east coast and pounding states on that side very hard with heavy wind and rain. Although I was supposed to arrive back to Florida on Monday, my flight got canceled twice, and Delta put me through hell in getting new flights, and delaying others causing me to miss more flights and so on. The last 3 days were quite an adventure for me in fighting for a way back south. I have safely arrived and my family up north is doing fine now that the power is back up and running (after being out for almost 3 days!) and most of the damage from large trees falling down and power lines all over the place is about cleaned up.

With that said, HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Unfortunately I am staying in for the holiday. My vacation got extended which isn’t a bad thing, but having to go back to work after being off for a week means it’s early to bed and rise once again. While most folks are gorging themselves in the many chocolate variety packs and sweet candies that are going on sale tomorrow, I am pushing the candy to the side this year. For my Halloween treat, I’ve decided to make apples chips! Its a very simple, yummy, and healthy snack. If your not into dried fruits or haven’t had the opportunity to eat them, this is your time to take the fruit of your choice and dehydrate it in your oven. I absolutely love adding dried fruit into salads, oatmeal, yogurt and granola, or eating them solo. Apples are your best choice right now in terms of seasonal fruit, however, you may choose to do any fruit you like. I also prefer: bananas, mango, pineapple, and kiwi.

Active Time: 10 Minutes

Total Time: 1.5 – 2 Hours

Ingredients:

-2 Large Apples (I used Gala)

-2 Tablespoons Sugar

-1 Teaspoon Cinnamon

 

Method of Prep:

-Slice apples thin using a sharp knife or mandolin (if you have one)

-Heat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

-In a large bowl, add sugar and cinnamon to the sliced apples and toss until evenly coated.

-Layer a sheet pan with parchment paper, Spread apple slices onto paper, keeping an even distance in between each.

-Place in the oven and bake for up to 2 hours until dry. The texture should be fragile and lightly crunchy.

-Let cool for 10 minutes after removing from the oven.

Enjoy!