Monday, December 13, 2010

Apple Butter

Apple butter is something of a tradition in my family. When other kids were eating their pb & j, I remember my mom making me peanut butter and apple butter sandwiches to take for school lunches when I was little. Then when my sister and I were older I remember getting to help Mom make big delicious batches of it and canning them in jars to put up for the year. Now, I slather it on toast to have with my morning coffee for breakfast. The recipe was handed down from my grandmother so it is a very special tradition for us each fall, waiting for the apples to be ready so we can make more apple butter. I know Christmas is fast approaching and it seems like fall is past, but I just made my last batch of the year and I wanted to share it with you. Enjoy!

Apple Butter
makes 2 1/2 - 3 pints


4 lbs. tart apples
4 c. apple cider
2 1/2 c. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. ginger
2 tbsp. grated lemon peel
2 tbsp. lemon juice


Wash apples; remove stems and ends. Cut up but do not peel or core. In a large saucepan, combine apples and cider. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and cook until soft, approx. 15 minutes. Press apples and cider in a food mill.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine all ingredients and stir well. Divide mixture between two 9x13 baking dishes. Bake uncovered for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Sterilize jars and lids in hot water. Pour apple butter into jars, leaving 1" head space. Make sure there is no apple butter on jar rim before putting lids on. Lightly screw on lids and rings. Boil the jars in water bath canner for 5 minutes then remove. Lids should seal. Let cool to room temperature then screw bands on tightly.

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