working on more apples

When I mentioned that the last farmers’ market was all about squash, garlic and kale, a cousin in Southern California offered to send a photo of strawberries from her farmers’ market.  Snarky.

I’m taking advantage of a couple of days off to work through a huge bag of apples from Don Baker farm.  It was a lovely day for our last Hudson Farmers’ market of the season on Saturday and I stocked up.

This rather medieval gadget is now my favorite kitchen toy.  There’s even a warning label about keeping away from small children…

This is the apple peeler/corer that my aunt gave to me a couple of years ago, and it has given me a whole new perspective on apple desserts.  Which I’ve always loved to eat but not necessarily to make.

Applesauceadapted from Joy of Cooking

Place in a large, heavy skillet or saucepan:

  • 3 pounds cooking apples, peeled if desired, cored, cut into 1/2″ thick slices
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice, depending on juiciness of apples
  • 1-1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, depending on tartness of apples
  • 1 large cinnamon stick

Cover and simmer, stirring often, over low heat using tender but not mushy, about 20 minutes (maybe longer).  Stir in:

  • Scant 1/2 cup white or turbinado sugar or 6 tablespoons mild honey  (I use local honey)
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground ginger (optional – but use it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground mace (optional – good thing, since I never have it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Cook, stirring, until the sweetener is dissolved and blended, about 1 minute.  Remove from heat.  Discard the cinnamon stick.  For chunky applesauce, break up the apples with a wooden spoon.  For medium texture, crush with a potato masher.  For smooth sauce, pass it through a food mill or coarse sieve.

Serve warm or chilled.  Great on greek yogurt.

****

On another note, I was attempting to make red wine ice cream as an alternative to pie for Thanksgiving.  In boiling the wine down to a syrup, I ended up with this burnt mess.  Tragic waste of two bottles of cheap wine.

burnt mess

Kitchen time ends now.

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