When our realtor first brought us to what would be our current home we could not believe our eyes. The family who lived here before us was already well on their way to creating what we knew we wanted. There were chickens (which we inherited!), blackberry bushes, and fruit trees! Two of the biggest? Apples.
Growing up in Connecticut, come October it was ALL about the apples. Pumpkins were always fun to pick too, but apples seemed to be the craze for much longer. You could find apple ANYTHING! Warmer temperatures down here don't seem to bring that level of apple-craze, but I knew that come fall we would be getting a little slice of home.
Of course then the "problem" becomes what to do with all of the apples! One of my favorites is this simple apple butter recipe. It's easy, it stores well, and best of all- its something you can easily make with the small apples that fall throughout the season so you can still save your biggest and juiciest apple for other things!
4 lbs. of apples, chopped NOT cored
1 cup water
1 cup apple cider vinegar
3 cups sugar
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp ginger
1. Add apples, water, and apple cider vinegar to pot. Heat to boil, until apples are soft (about 20 minutes).
2. Add cooked apples to food processor and puree, then add back to pot over medium heat. (We usually end up with about 9 cups)
3. Add 1/2 cup sugar for every cup of apples (we use 4 cups). Add lemon juice, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. Continue to stir as mixture cooks to avoid burning the mixture at the bottom of the pot.
5. Continue to stir on medium to low heat until mixture is thick. You should be able to put a small amount onto a cold plate and have it set when turning the plate on its edge.
6. Enjoy as is or add to mason jars to can!
*To can, add to sterilized jars then lightly tighten lids (loose enough so air can still escape). Bring large pot of water to rolling boil then add jars. Cook for ten minutes then remove jars from pot. The change in temperature should seal the jars. Leave overnight, then tighten lids completely and label with date.