foodshaken

Apple Butter– And a return to cooking

Gee, I guess it’s been a while… The last time I posted I was in another continent living another life. I have returned from the land of cheese and wine and returned to the one of maple syrup and polar bears not that I’ve ever seen a polar bear…

What have I been doing all this time, you ask? (I guess you likely didn’t ask that, but I asked it for you so you will get an answer for it.) I have been getting used to being back at school and back in my little town of S. I returned from France two months ago and since then have been studying my life away, but I have made a return to the kitchen which I’m very happy about. The best part of coming back to S. was seeing my best friend MES, four months was too long!

It’s fall in eastern Canada and the nights are cold and the days crisp, which is just how I like them. The leaves are changing colour and will soon fall, but for now I’ve been taking advantage and taking all the photos I can. I took this one this morning on my way to the elementary school at 7:30.

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What was I doing at the elementary school at that hour, you ask? (Again, I put that question in your head.) I am teaching 25 9-year-olds how to play the violin. No one on Earth would ever have imagined that I would be still playing the violin, never mind teaching g it at this stage in my life. To be truthful, I’m a violist, not a violinist, but I started on the violin and the skills transfer. So all of this involves me showing up at the elementary school two days a week at 8:00. It’s fun.

I was recipe browsing the other day and found a recipe for apple butter, which I had never heard of, which sounded good. So I decided to make it, and here’s how I did it!

Apple Butter

So I have a confession before we actually start cooking, I didn’t actually follow the recipe I looked at. I kind of made this up, but I tried it this morning and it was really good, so this is my very own apple butter recipe!

Start by peeling and slicing your apples into the pot of your slow cooker (I don’t actually have one, but my roommate does!!). I used 14 (I think) apples and a combination of MacIntosh and Cortlands because they’re my favourite.

Add to that 3/4 cups white sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, about 1/4 maple syrup, cinnamon and nutmeg and a little water (or apple cider!). For this recipe, the cinnamon and nutmeg don’t really need to be measured; put it this way, I didn’t measure mine and it was great! Stir it around a little and flick on the slow cooker. Ideally this would cook on low for at least six hours, I chose to make mine starting at 5:30 in the afternoon an so I put it on high for about five hours. Everyone in the pot looks like this.

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If you find that towards the end of your six or seven hours of cooking, that your apples are too watery, leave the top off the cooker for the last half hour or so of cooking to let the water evaporate. You can also run a fork through the apples to mush up the bigger pieces.

Once it’s all cooked, can them, and there you have it: Apple Butter. This made about a pint and a half, I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out, so I didn’t make very much, but when I make it again, I’ll be filling my my roommate’s slow cooker.

I think I’ll do a post on canning, it’s great. (Although, this was the first time I had done it alone, I used to do it with my grandmother who used to make pickles, beets, chows, and jams and my mother makes jams and chutneys. So I’ve seen it done, and helped in the process, at least 20 times in my life.) It’s not hard, but it is wonderfully satisfying. It makes you feel like you can provide for yourself (and your family if you have one of those) in the depths of winter. That’s a bit of wisdom from my great friend JS.

This my apple butter would be great on scones (which I may make tonight), to put in with a roast pork, to give as gifts, and on a plain old piece of toast.

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This entry was published on October 24, 2012 at 11:57 PM and is filed under Breakfast, Desserts, Snacks, Tea. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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