>

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Country Apple Butter


A touch of fall is in the air. In the South, that means apple season. The stifling humidity has lessened a great deal, so a trip to the apple orchard is really pleasant. You can't beat fresh local apples this time of year!




One of my favorite autumn recipes to prepare is Country Apple Butter. Cooked the old fashioned way right on the stove top. I know it is popular these days to make this recipe in a slow cooker, which is perfectly fine. The stove top method is just my preferred way because it's quick and easy. The process is all done in just two hours.

The wonderful aromas fill the house as the apple butter cooks. I've always loved apple butter. It's great on biscuits, toast, as a dipping sauce, and compliments pork beautifully. Can you imagine the reaction when serving the beloved favorite appetizer, sausage balls, with a dip option of homemade apple butter? It's a special touch people may not expect, but will surely love.

This recipe is great to preserve using the water bath canning method also. While the canning method is optional, it will give you a longer shelf life. If you choose not to can your apple butter, it can be refrigerated for up to a month.


Ingredients
  • 5 lbs Fresh Local Apples 🍎🍏(around a dozen apples)
  • 1/2 c Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 c Pure Apple Juice (no additives)
  • 1.5 c Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon (heaping teaspoon)
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg (fresh grated is fine too)
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
  • Pinch Kosher Salt
Other
  • 6 to 8 - 8 oz Jam Jars with rings and lids

You'll need a 7 quart dutch oven or large soup pot to prepare this recipe on the stove top.

Start by cutting the apple in half and remove the core and any stems. I use a mix of different different apples that I favor for apple butter. There is no need to peel the apples for this recipe. The peels add lots of flavor. You'll never know they're in there later on.


Add the apple slices to the cooking pot.

Add the apple cider vinegar and apple juice. 

Cover and cook over medium high heat for half an hour. The apples will cook down and soften quite a bit.


After 30 minutes remove the lid and add the brown sugar and spices. Stir to combine everything. 

Cover and reduce the heat to medium for the next half hour. Be sure to stir constantly after adding the sugar and spices. The dark brown sugar has more molasses and can burn to the bottom if left unattended. Trust me, I found that out the hard way once upon a time. 

Each time you stir break, down the softened apples. You'll be able to break everything down quite a bit just using your spatula or spoon during the cooking process.

After 30 minutes cooking on medium, reduce the heat once more to a low simmer setting. Vent the lid on the pot to allow for evaporation to thicken up the mixture.

Cook for an additional hour, stirring occasionally.


The apple butter should be done at this point. A trick that I picked up from another blogging friend, Mary at Cooking with Mary and Friends , is to use a spoon test. When the apple butter is done a spoon should stand straight up in the mixture. It works like a charm.


Use an immersion blender to blend the apple butter to a smooth consistency. See how creamy it looks and you can't tell there were peelings in there at all. If you do not have an immersion blender, no worries, you can use a food processor. 


Keep the apple butter over low heat while you prepare the canning jars.

Sterilize the jars and rings by boiling in water for 10 minutes. It is not necessary to heat the lids. You never want to put the lids in boiling water because it will break down the wax seal material.


Remove the sterilized jars and rings and set upon a paper towel lined area on the counter top. This helps reduce shock to the jars placed directly on cold counter tops, which could result in cracks to the jar.

Ladle the apple butter into the prepared jars leaving 1/2" of head room. Cover with a lid and secure with ring band.


Place the filled jars in boiling water, covered by at least 1" of water. Process for 10 minutes.

Remove processed jars to a paper towel lined area of the counter top to cool.






You may also be interested in:


To print, scroll to the bottom of the post for a printable recipe card


See this recipe at Weekend Potluck





Country Apple Butter

INGREDIENTS

Ingredients
  • 5 lbs Fresh Local Apples 🍎🍏(around a dozen apples)
  • 1/2 c Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1/2 c Pure Apple Juice (no additives)
  • 1.5 c Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon (heaping teaspoon)
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg (fresh grated is fine too)
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
  • Pinch Kosher Salt
Other
  • 6 to 8 - 8 oz Jam Jars with rings and lids

INSTRUCTIONS


  1. You'll need a 7 quart dutch oven or large soup pot to prepare this recipe on the stove top.
  2. Start by cutting the apple in half and remove the core and any stems. I use a mix of different different apples that I favor for apple butter. There is no need to peel the apples for this recipe. The peels add lots of flavor. You'll never know they're in there later on.
  3. Add the apple slices to the cooking pot.
  4. Add the apple cider vinegar and apple juice. Cover and cook over medium high heat for half an hour. The apples will cook down and soften quite a bit.
  5. After 30 minutes remove the lid and add the brown sugar and spices. Stir to combine everything. Cover and reduce the heat to medium for the next half hour. Be sure to stir constantly after adding the sugar and spices. The dark brown sugar has more molasses and can burn to the bottom if left unattended. Trust me, I found that out the hard way once upon a time.
  6. Each time you stir break, down the softened apples. You'll be able to break everything down quite a bit just using your spatula or spoon during the cooking process. After 30 minutes cooking on medium, reduce the heat once more to a low simmer setting. Vent the lid on the pot to allow for evaporation to thicken up the mixture.
  7. Cook for an additional hour, stirring occasionally.
  8. Use an immersion blender to blend the apple butter to a smooth consistency. See how creamy it looks and you can't tell there were peelings in there at all. If you do not have an immersion blender, no worries, you can use a food processor.
If Canning
  1. Sterilize the jars and rings by boiling in water for 10 minutes. It is not necessary to heat the lids. You never want to put the lids in boiling water because it will break down the wax seal material. Remove the sterilized jars and rings and set upon a paper towel lined area on the counter top. This helps reduce shock to the jars placed directly on cold counter tops, which could result in cracks to the jar. Ladle the apple butter into the prepared jars leaving 1/2" of head room. Cover with a lid and secure with ring band. Place the filled jars in boiling water, covered by at least 1" of water. Process for 10 minutes. Remove processed jars to a paper towel lined area of the counter top to cool.
Created using The Recipes Generator

8 comments:

  1. That spoon trick works like a champ every time. Thanks for the mention, and so happy you tried it and like it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This looks so good, and I bet makes the house smell wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  3. My husband would really love this apple butter. He told me last night he rather have my cooking than eating out. ugh so much work these men can be.

    ReplyDelete
  4. We love Apple Butter and this looks like a great recipe! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a great week and come back to see us real soon!
    Miz Helen

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love the spoon trick. I’m going to have to try this recipe, and I bet the house smells amazing when you make it!

    ReplyDelete

Share with us, we welcome your comments:

Print Friendly and PDF