Tuesday, September 29, 2015

3 Ways to Use Your Apple Harvest

As I mentioned in my previous post, we have lots of apples! In Fall, I think that when it comes to food, pumpkins try and take center stage, but I feel that the apple is too often overlooked.  (I am biased, while I do love pumpkin and I love the idea of eating seasonally, I am definitely a huge proponent of the apple and all you can also do with them.)

So, yesterday, I worked on the first of 3 ways to use your apple harvest.  (Don't worry, I will share more as I try out recipes.)

First, my go to way of putting up apples is always apple butter.  I LOVE apple butter!  It makes me think of my great grandmother.  She was always canning and her apple butter was just the best.  Unfortunately, her recipe wasn't passed down to anyone in the family, but I have found a recipe that I feel is pretty close (or at least as much as I remember...)

I follow pretty much everything they do.  I would suggest that if you have a dutch oven, it works wonderfully for this task.  Mine is a 3 quart dutch oven by Gourmet Living which is very affordable for a dutch oven. 

Post apple softening in cider vinegar and water.

I like using our second hand food mill to reduce the apples to create the puree.

I know there are a lot of crock pot versions, and I am sure they are also good, but I just like the hands on approach and I have a lot of say over how thick and how it sets up and I can do the whole process from start to canning in about 3 hours.

Just after canning.

They make really good gifts. I always make sure to make myself plenty and then have at least a few jars for gifts.

Cut out some small squares of cute fabric and viola! A lovely gift for the holidays!

Ok, enough on apple butter.  So, while I had apple simmering, I found a recipe through Pinterest (hey, speaking of, follow us on Pinterest here) for a crockpot apple crisp.  

I only changed one thing, due to not having just old fashioned rolled oats.  Instead I used my package of Bob's Red Mill Rolled 5 Grain Cereal. 

Was a great substitute for the regular old fashioned oats!
I quite enjoyed this recipe...actually the hubby and I enjoyed it so much that we forgot to take a photo before we ate it all...

Finally, another fun idea I saw on Pinterest was on my mind while working away.  That was a great way to use the old unwanted rinds and peels. (As you will see, you actually use these in the apple butter, but not in the crisp.)  I love trying to use everything, so you can imagine how excited I was to find a recipe for making your own apple cider vinegar from the remains.  

I will note that this is the first time I am trying this recipe, and results won't be in for quite some time.  But it was easy, and we use apple cider vinegar for all sorts of things here, including upset tummies, recipes (like apple butter! Ok...Ok...I will stop going on about the apple butter...) and even to help keep the angora rabbits healthy.  So I was all about giving this a try!

My apples making us some vinegar.
So in about a month and a half I will be letting you know how it worked out.  But if I understand, this is basically a form of lacto-fermentation so I am sure it will be quite nice.

I still have plenty of apples, and plan on getting many more from our local you-pick over the next couple of months, so keep an eye out for some more ideas for these little gems.

How do you like to use your apples?


1 comment:

  1. I got a huge bag of apples this weekend. I can't wait to get out the crockpot and make a batch of apple butter. One of my personal favorite recipes is for apple kuchen. If you like you can find my recipe on my pintrest under YUMM!! I love the apple cider vinegar idea. I will be trying that.