If you had visited the basement of the house I grew up in, you might have thought we were stockpiling food in case of Y2K or armageddon. We had an entire room full of canned applesauce, peaches, pears, plums, cherries, tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, pickles, and probably more that I’m forgetting.
I remember my grandparents taking us out to a local orchard or farm and picking the produce ourselves. To motivate us, they would pay us a nickel for each bucket we filled. Then, we would go home and spend all day canning.
We lived on an old apple orchard so when fall came, we made homemade apple sauce. This fall, I bought lots of my favorite McIntosh apples while they were available. I still had a few sitting in my fridge so today I decided I’d turn them into applesauce — one of my daughter’s favorite foods.
- Apples (I like to use McIntosh or a mixture of tart apples)
- Cinnamon (optional)
I start by washing my apples in vinegar water to clean them, since I don’t remove the peels.
Then I chop the apples into quarters and remove the seeds and stems.
Next, I cover the bottom of a pan with water. I don’t use very much because the apples will give off a lot of water. Then I cover the pan and cook the apples over medium-low heat until they’re soft.
When my grandma was downsizing, she gave me one of her food mills. I place the mill on top of a bowl and run my cooked apples through it.
The result is apple sauce! It has a nice pink color since the apples were cooked with the peels. I sometimes add cinnamon but I never add sugar because I think the sauce is perfect without it.
Since I didn’t make a large batch, I use a glass jar I had saved for storage.
I’m very thankful for my grandparents’ example — because now I am able to offer the same quality of food to my own family.
Now for a taste test.