Recipes @ Making Homemade Applesauce

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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Making Homemade Applesauce

Enjoy a bowl of homemade applesauce; our two recipes for this favorite comfort food rival the commercially prepared variety.

The sweet flavor of homemade applesauce makes it a perfect companion to potato latkes. During the holiday season, I like to make homemade applesauce—both stovetop applesauce and a pink applesauce, both kinds keep well in the freezer after they are prepared. I first learned about pink applesauce from Martha Stewart, who developed her recipe when she found out that when you add lemon juice to red-skinned apples, the acid from the lemon reacts with the skin of the apple to create a pink color. In my version of Martha's pink applesauce recipe, I like to use Ida Reds, but McIntosh apples will work just as well. It's important to alter the amount of sugar you use, since different varieties of apples will vary in their sweetness. The stovetop applesauce is prepared with spices to produce a flavor that can be likened to eating a home-baked apple pie.

Stovetop Applesauce
Serves 4

  • 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon juice, plus zest of 1/2 lemon 1
  • 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 2 Granny Smith or Macoun apples, peeled, cored, and cut into pieces
  • 2 Empire apples, peeled, cored, and cut into pieces
  1. In a large saucepan, combine the apple cider, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice and zest, brown sugar, and butter. Add all the apples, and toss well to combine.
  2. 2. Cover the pan and cook, simmering over medium heat, until the apples are very tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer the apples to the bowl of a food processor; pulse until the mixture is smooth. Serve warm.
Pink Applesauce
Serves 4

  • 4 Ida Red, McIntosh, or other similar red-skinned variety
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar (adjust to taste depending on sweetness of apples)
  1. Cut the apples into quarters, leaving the skin on, and remove the seeds and the cores. Place the apples in a mixing bowl and add lemon juice; toss to combine.
  2. Place the apples, sugar, and 3/4 cup water in a heavy saucepan. Cover the pan, and let the apples simmer over medium heat, about 20 minutes, or until the apples are very soft.
  3. Remove the saucepan from the heat, uncover, and let the apples cool slightly. Using a rubber spatula, push the apples through a wire sieve. Pull out and discard the skins. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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