Harvest Time: Apple Butter Cooking
I fell in love with Apple Butter the day I tasted it two years ago. Its like apple sauce, but has a lovely reddish colour to it (depending on the apples) and a spicier taste. Its great on toast and on top of porridge. Last year I tried to make some for the first time and I followed the recipe that I found online, but the result was not to my liking. The Apple Butter last year reminded me of christmas way too much so it was only used during that time.
This year I knew what I was doing (sort of) and took a lighter hand on the spices. I used only cinnamon and ginger. The batch of Apple Butter turned out just right. This year, I used two reciepes as a base for my Apple Butter.
I got the apples from my sisters best friend’s orchard.
- 35 small apples (fills 5,7l slow cooker 3/4 full)
- 1/2 cup of water
- 50 ml apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup of brown sugar
- 1/2 cup of granulated sugar (I used organic)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- pinch of salt
- pinch of ginger
- Wash the apples in vinegar water. (sink full of water, 50 ml vinegar, about 10 mins, then rinse the apples with clean water) This will clean the apples from apples natural wax and pesticides, and you avoid peeling all of them. Besides the apple peel gives the nice colour to the apple butter, and is lots of fibers.
- Remove cores, chop the apples to smaller sized pieces.
- Place all the apples to the slow cooker.
- Add water and vinegar.
- Add sugar and ginger.
- Mix all the ingredients well.
- Place cinnamon stick into the apples.
- Let cook in the slow cooker for 8 hours. The apples will look nice and brown-red when they are done.
- Let the mixture cool down a bit before you use your blender or immersion blender to the apples. The apples will take on the buttery look after you have used the mixer.
- Measure the Apple Butter to jars that you have cleaned in a dishwasher, or if no dish washer, placed in a oven heated to 100C to kill the germs (about 10 mins), remember that the jars will be hot when you take them out so dont touch them with your bare hands. Also, let the jars cool down to temperature where you can easily handle them before filling them.
- Once filled, put on the cap and let cool in room temperature and once cool, place in a fridge. The Apple Butter stays for a good while, but follow your nose on this. You can also freeze the Apple Butter if not Canning.
- The cinnamon stick will give a nice flavour to the apple butter while it cooks, without being overpowering. I used the "real" cinnamon stick, the Ceylon Cinnamon (Cinnamon zeylanicum) which by its nature is a much lighter cinnamon taste. How to tell the two mainly used cinnamons apart in stick form? the Ceylon Cinnamon has a much flakier, layered look to it while the more commonly used cassia cinnamon will look like a single piece of bark without layers.
- Also, a tid bit of info, Ceylon Cinnamon does not contain any coumarin, which is a sligtly toxic compound in the Cassia Cinnamon. We usually consume such small amounts of cinnamon that it does not make any real difference. Only if you use cinnamon alot, should you consider finding Ceylon Cinnamon. It will be a bit more expensive, but the taste is well worth it. Just like the more quality vanilla, the higher the price.
If you want to read more about the cassia and ceylon cinnamons, have a look at this The Wolrd’s Healthiest Foods. You can also do a google search as always.
The amount of Apple Butter that you get from a single batch of apples like this fills 2 medium sized jars and 2 small ones. This lasts a good bit, unless you get hooked on the Apple Butter and eat it every day! So tasty!