We've been busy, busy. I've made apple butter almost every autumn for the last eighteen years. I especially like it because I found a recipe that doesn't require the apples to be peeled.
Confession: I jealously guard my precious stash and if some of my friends receive a jar from me, they are special, indeed. Shhh... don't tell on me. I am trying to
indoctrinate, brainwash pass the family tradition down to my children. (not the hoarding, but making the apple butter)
I still have fond memories of family reunions at my grandparent's Tennessee farm where the apple butter simmered in a huge black cauldron near the orchard throughout the night while the adults took turns stirring the pot. There's nothing like the smell of cinnamon and apples.
Unpeeled Apple Butter Recipe
12 cups firm and tart chopped apples (do not peel them)
3/4 cup apple cider or water
1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
Combine apples and cider in 3 qt pot (a slow cooker or heavy pot is best)
Cook covered on low for approx. 8 hours.
Stir frequently. The time is approximate. Some apples are juicier than others. You may have to add some water if it gets too dry early in the cooking process. They must cook until they are thick and no longer runny. When thick enough, add sugar and spices and cook for another hour very low. Puree with a blender or hand blender. Pour into hot, sterilized jars and seal.
Share with others sparingly. :- )
Quick Autumn Potpourri Recipe: If you want your house to smell like autumn fruit and spices, drop a cinnamon stick in a small sauce pan with a lemon peel and a quartered orange or tangerine. If you have whole cloves, add a couple along with a bay leaf. Cover with water and let it simmer all day. Add more water when it gets low. The smell is wonderful. I often do this when company is coming or on the weekends. Ooh. I've inspired my own self this time. I'm off to put a pot on...