Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Apple Butter

It’s fall!  I love fall- corn mazes, pumpkin patches, Thanksgiving, and APPLES!  Last week Spencer and I went to Carter’s Mountain Orchard on a preschool field trip to eat donuts, learn about the life cycle of apples, and to pick a few.  We came home with quite a haul, and so this year I decided to make apple butter.  
My favorite breakfast: Toaster waffles with cream cheese and apple butter.
View from Carter's Mountain
Spencer and a couple of his preschool buddies on the field trip.

I should have followed Denni’s advise she left in the applesauce comments, but I used this slow cooker recipe from Allrecipes instead.  It had great reviews, and I was less than thrilled with the apple butter I made several years ago from a recipe I got off the Earth Fare website (which doesn’t seem to have recipes anymore).  I was a little shocked at the sugar, but decided not to alter it this time around.  I did omit the cloves, however, because I don’t have any and I don’t care for them anyway.

You will need

5 ½ lb apples ($6.54 if I had bought them, but they were included in the cost of the field trip)

4 cups (!) sugar ($2.44 per 4lb, $2.44/64oz = $.04 x 30oz = $1.20)

2 tsp cinnamon ($1.97 per 2.37oz, $1.97/2.37oz = $.83 x  .133oz = $.11)

Pinch of salt

Pinch of cloves, if you’d like.

8 half pint jars and lids (I finally have enough in stock that I only have to buy new lids!) ($2.65 per 12ct, $2.65/12lids = $.22 x 7lids = $1.55)

These are Golden Delicious, Jonagold, and a few random ones that we had at home.

Peel, core, and chop the apples into chunks.  Throw the apples into the food processor and pulse until finely chopped.  Dump the apples into the slow cooker and add in the rest of the ingredients.  Stir everything together, and leave on high for an hour.  Give the pot another stir, and turn the temperature to low.  Leave on low for 9 to 11 hours (I let it sit overnight).  Uncover, stir again, and let it sit on low for an additional hour, or until it has thickened to your desired consistency.  Can or freeze your apple butter.  (For canning instructions, see the jalapeno jelly or applesauce posts)

Apples peeled, cored, chopped, and processed.
Apple butter after stewing overnight.  The house smelled so good!
And here's the haul minus one half pint I gave to my mom after she graciously watched my crazy kids this afternoon!

This stuff is crazy delicious!  It is very sweet, and again, I should have looked at Denni’s comment before I dumped a QUART of sugar into the pot, but it’s a condiment, so I guess it’s not a big deal. 

Try It 

$2.86 for 8 ½ cups of apple butter, or $.34/cup.

Buy It

$4.95 for 2 cups of local apple butter from Graves Mountain, or $2.48/cup.


Even if you had to buy new jars and the apples, the total would have come to $16.08, or $1.89/cup, making it still completely worthwhile.  Plus, it is so good!  Try It, but maybe with less sugar.

1 comment:

  1. I just wanted to add that one of the cool things about living in central Virginia is that I drove past the homes of James Madison, James Monroe and Thomas Jefferson that day. Around here that's just a regular thing. I love Virginia!