As a child and young teenager, I loved applesauce. I anticipated the soft, sweet, cinnamony, gentle taste as I eagerly ripped open the aluminum top of the plastic, kid-sized package. One second later, I had eaten all of the applesauce and was always disappointed there was no more.
Now that I’m what many would consider a seasoned adult (my mom would object), I am no longer a fan of applesauce. . .that is, not the store-bought kind. I originally tried out this apple dish as a means to make apple juice/cider while making applesauce a byproduct. After much frustration with the muslin cloth and the realization of how little liquid yielded from the 10-14 cooked apples, I decided to stick with applesauce.
But that very little bit of juice/cider that managed to
seep drip through the cloth was really like liquid gold! It was thick, sweet, and oh so flavorful. I hope to try making more apple cider soon. Anyway, when I tasted how AMAZING the juice/cider was, my curiosity was peaked. I tried the applesauce and SWOONED! I couldn’t believe it had only 2 tablespoons of sugar instead of the 1/4-1/2 cup called for in other recipes. It was perfect.
It was thick and soothing to my tongue and throat. It had a perfect balance of sweetness and cinnamon, clove, ginger, allspice, and other fall-like flavors. This applesauce was so amazing that only a couple of days later, I bought more apples to make more! The other great thing about this recipe is that you don’t need to peel the apples. Just cut them, place them in the crockpot, squeeze a bit of fresh, lemon juice on top along with brown sugar and spices, and allow it to cook and fill your house with the rich, delicious perfume of fall, apples, cinnamon, and love :). I hope you give this recipe a try!
10-14 small- to medium-sized apples (I have now used Jonathons and McIntosh apples)
1/2-1 small lemon
2 Tbsp brown sugar, optional (depends on how sweet your apples are)
cinnamon to taste
pumpkin spice (cloves, allspice, ginger, and cinnamon) to taste
Cut the apples (no need to peel them*; they will be pulverized later). Place apples into the crockpot. Squeeze lemon juice on top of the sliced apples. Add sugar, cinnamon, and other spices. Allow apples to cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Pulverize the softened apples with a hand blender or transfer them to a blender. Blend softened apples until they reach your desired consistency. Eat the applesauce warm or cold! Enjoy!
*If you prefer a chunkier applesauce and are not a fan of apple skins, then you should peel the apples before cutting them. My applesauce was blended well enough that I rarely tasted any skin. It was perfect for me. Also, the skin has extra nutrients!