Who doesn't love apple butter?! It's the epitome of fall and is a great technique to know how to make if you go apple picking.
Other than apple butter just being so delicious and versatile, this recipe is so great is because it is more than just a recipe, it’s a technique! When you take a step back and look at what we are doing here, you can see that we are essentially making a jam or preserve.
This is important because it allows us to revert back to the traditional methods of picking an abundance of perfectly ripened fruit at their peak season and preserving it for the rest of the year. Not only can this technique be used for apples but with minor adjustments, you can also use this technique on pears, peaches, quince, plums, you name it! Just follow the simple steps below and make this the year you actually make and can your own preserves!
The history of apple butter in our country is as old as the country itself. Actually older, considering the colonists were making it before the American Revolution. Before the days of refrigeration and controlled freezing, farmers and foragers were forced to preserve their harvests at the end of the growing season or risk it rotting.
One popular technique was to cook the apples in large cauldrons over open flames with sugar, cider, and spices until it became a deeply-colored smooth puree. Once reduced and pureed, apple butter can keep much longer than a typical refrigerated food because of the high sugar content, high acidity levels, and low percentage of water- not being occupied by sugar. It is difficult for bacteria to grow in that environment, thus helping to preserve the product longer. Throughout the United States, apple butter festivals are still held to uphold traditions and pass on the technique.
Once cooked and pureed, apple butter can then be portioned into jars and canned, or frozen in plastic containers. Once preserved, you will have apple butter to use year round. Whether you are spreading it on a biscuit or toast, using it as an accompaniment for cheese, or using it as a component for a dessert, you will never regret taking the time once a year to have apple butter kicking around. I know we never do!
Not only do we like this recipe for its taste and the perfect fall aroma that it brings into our home, but we also love how few ingredients it has. All you need are the following:
While making apple butter does take quite a long time given it's the oven for about four hours, the actual process is quite simple and easy. The steps are:
Pretty easy right?
We absolutely love fall and LOVE making homemade apple butter after we come home from picking them ourselves (with a bit of cider, might I add). You can use apple butter to top French Toast, as a holiday gift, in various desserts and breakfast, or simply as a spread on some good homemade white bread.
Happy Fall! Cheers and eat well.
This apple butter will kick off your fall season the right way and give your home an aroma of the best fall-scented candle you’ve ever experienced. No peeling is required and results in a velvety smooth apple butter!
By bringing together our passions of cooking and photography, we created Off The Line, a destination for recipes and private events. Thanks for joining us as we take restaurant caliber recipes "off the line" and bring them into your home kitchen.
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