6 lbs of Fuji apples
1 cup of apple cider vinegar
3 cups of apple cider
2 cups of sugar (or more for desired sweetnesss)
Pinch of Salt
3 tsp of cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (Trader Joe’s is my favorite)
Rind and juice of 1 large lemon
Note: You will need a food mill, chinoise sieve or a potato ricer to make this easier. You could use a wire mesh strainer but it’s not the preferred method. You could also peel and core the apples prior to cooking, however a lot of the natural pectin and flavor is in the peel and core. This could diminish the flavor and affect the thickness. 4-5 pint sized canning jars, rings and lids and a water bath canner if you are preserving.
Wash the apples and cut into quarters, make sure to leave the peels and cores in tact but removing any damaged parts. Place apples along with vinegar and apple cider in a large dutch oven type stainless steel pot. Bring to a boil and cook over medium heat simmering until soft, about 20 minutes.
With a slotted spoon, scoop apples out and place in your food mill, sieve or potato ricer to create the apple purée. You should wind up with approximately 8 cups of purée. Add ¼ cup of sugar for each cup of apple or more if you like it sweeter. Stir in dash of salt, cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice along with the grated lemon rind and juice. Resist the urge to eat this as applesauce!!
Cook apple mixture in a large uncovered pot on medium low heat, stirring OFTEN to prevent burning until it’s thick and smooth – at least an hour. I prefer to cook it on the low side for about an hour and 30 minutes.
During the last 30 minutes you can get your water bath canner going and sterilize your jars, lids and rings. My preferred method is steaming the jars on the rack in the canner with boiling water below for 10 minutes. I keep the lids and rings in a small pot of water, heat the water until it almost boils and let them sit for at least 10 minutes.
Fill the jars and remove air bubbles with rubber spatula, wipe tops clean and put lids and rings on jars. Process for 15 minutes, turn off heat and remove lid. Allow jars to rest in water for 5 minutes. Remove the jars and set aside for at least 24 hours.
If you want to make a small batch with the apples from your CSA box, here are the converted measurements for you:
2 lbs Fuji apples
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar
1 cup of apple cider
Dash of Salt
1 tsp of cinnamon
1/3 tsp pumpkin pie spice (Trader Joe’s is my favorite)
Rind and juice of 1/2 small lemon