The main point of this recipe is about using markdown produce, in this example apples, but of course this recipe can be made just the same with regular priced apples! But markdown produce is a great way to save when you can make things homemade with it 😉
When Life Gives You Apples.. Make Applesauce!
I posted yesterday about how I found a carriage of 3lb. bags of apples at my local produce market, marked down to .99 because they were bruised! And on top of that, I got .25 back from MobiSave for any brand apples.. so with a .74 3lb. bag of bruised apples, here’s what I did:
3lb. bag apples
1/4 cup Ginger Ale
1/3 cup Orange Juice
1/4 PACKED light brown sugar
1/2 tspn. ground cinnamon
1/4 tspn. salt
1/8 tspn. black pepper*
3 tbsp. butter**
~Also optional is the vanilla, which for my purposes I chose NOT to use because I like to use often as a condiment with any pork chop or loin (or chicken!) and don’t want that dessert-quality to it. Add 1/2 tsbp. when you dump everything in, if you choose to use.
*OPTIONAL: Black pepper is MY secret ingredient that I’m only now revealing for the first time. Here’s why black pepper; it hits certain parts of the tongue – I swear you won’t notice it, but it’ll hit something you won’t understand, until you do lol.
**OPTIONAL: As far as the butter goes, it’s for that unctuous factor and totally up to you.. this recipe does NOT need it, but we like it in our house.. especially when you warm it up on the stove.. then the butter really sings!
This recipe is super complicated, you may want to have your graph paper, a compass, scale and a butter churn ready.. JUUUUST KIDDING 😉 HA!
Peel, core and chop the apples up into similar sizes, so they cook evenly. My apples were very small, so I just quartered them. Dump the rest of the ingredients in and coat all the apples.
Heat on medium high heat until simmering, reduce heat and simmer additional 30 minutes. Usually about 3/4 of the way through the simmer process, I take the potato masher to them to see what consistency I’m at.. adding a little more liquid if needed.
At this point you have two choices: if you like it chunky, just stick with the potato masher and mash to the consistency that you like, or move on to the next step…
After 30 minutes, take off the heat and allow to cool another 15-30 minutes, just until you feel comfortable pureeing. Puree in a blender, or run through a food mill, use an immersion blender, or in my case.. a baby Magic Bullet (I don’t blend often, it was given to me lol) until it reaches the smoothness you like.
Let cool completely and place in freezer bags, place flat, laying on top of the other (being sure to label & date) and freeze! Place on a kitchen rag in the fridge overnight to thaw, it does give off a bit of condensation. Serve warm (gently warm in saucepan or slowly in microwave, covered by a paper towel to avoid explosion messes) or cold, your choice.
Makes 5 cups.