Did you know that I'm obsessed with my Crock Pot, Crocky? Did you know that Crock Pots are known to produce delicious breads and sweet desserts? Well I am, and they are, and today seemed a great day to unite those facts by whipping up an enormous batch of homemade applesauce in Crocky.
This recipe is pretty dang easy if you're an expert apple slicer like me. If not, put on some tunes and grab a glass of wine, because it takes awhile to peel and dice 19 apples to perfection. I recommend Maria Carey's Christmas album and any Riesling. Once everything is in the pot, it's smooth sailing. Enjoy!
18 small-medium apples of various types (about 5 lbs.)
1 large green apple (optional, adds tartness)
2t vanilla extract
3T brown sugar
1t ground ginger
1t pumpkin pie spice
pinch of salt
(1) Put water, vanilla, and salt in your crock pot, and set to high heat. This is my version of "preheating the oven."
(2) Peel and dice all apples, and wing them all into your crock pot as you chop them. I made my chunks pretty small, because I want to keep some intact for the final product. If you're going to blend the entire batch, it doesn't matter what size chunks you use, although larger chunks will take longer to soften. I cut the green apple into even smaller tidbits because I didn't want to scare anyone who meandered across a tart chunk in their bowl.
|Wait! Don't throw away your scraps! You can simmer the peels and innards|
with some water, cinnamon and vanilla for a sneak preview of the
aromas that your applesauce will soon emit!
NOTE: Once the apples were totally cooked, I scooped out about a cup of cinnamon-apple-syrup which had accumulated at the bottom of the crock pot because I originally used 1 cup of water. Did I produce this much liquid in the recipe intentionally? No. Will I use this liquid to create a delicious apple spice cake or icing concoction in the near future? Yes. For anyone recreating this applesauce, I would reduce the water to 1/4 cup, just to steam the apples and make sure they don't burn to the bottom. If you do end up with extra liquid, scoop it out before blending because it contains a lot of sugar and spice that will alter the overall flavor.
(4) Now it's time for the big decisions. It's time to decide how chunky you want your applesauce to be. Set the chunks that you wish to keep aside, and blend the rest of the apples and their surrounding goo. Pour the chunkless applesauce back into the chunks, and stir up your beautiful pot of homemade applesauce. I blended about 2/3 of the apples, and left 1/3 as big chunks. I was happy with this ratio. Voila!
Serving suggestion: Serve warm with vanilla ice-cream.
|Shout out to two of my best appliances, Crocky & Ninja.|
I couldn't have done it without you.
Review: I am already a huge fan of applesauce (as evidenced by the stacks of single-serve applesauce containers accumulating in my apartment), but this stuff is like 14 trillion times better than what you'd get at the store. The texture is more interesting (don't fear the chunks), and it tastes more complex, probably due to the various types of apples. One thing I have altered in the suggested recipe is the cinnamon content. I went a bit overboard with 3T, so I have suggested 1T, and more can be added to taste.