If you were like me and bought apples at local orchards and leave with a gorgeous bag of fresh apples, you’ve probably already tackled apple chips or apple crisp — what’s left? Homemade applesauce. Yummm. Even better, take that applesauce one step further and add ginger, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and raisins. The cinnamon and cooking apples make your kitchen smell oh-so-inviting. I can honestly say I’ve never made applesauce from scratch before, and I expected a labor-intensive and arduous afternoon. I encountered quite the opposite. Using a food processor cut down on chopping time, and the apples cooked much faster than I anticipated. In fact, this was quite simple. The flavors from apple pie or crisp are all there. Use this Spiced Applesauce with Golden Raisins as a delicious substitute for a dessert, garnish with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream, and you have a healthier, yet deliciously tasty dessert or eat the applesauce plain and have a simple snack
Ingredients (makes about 4 c).
- about 10 small to medium orchard Gala apples, washed
- 1/8 to 1/4 c water
- 1/8 c apple cider
- 3/4 c golden raisins
- 1 cinnamon sitck
- 2-3 whole cloves
- 1/2 t cinnamon
- 1/2 t nutmeg
- 1/2 t ginger
- 1½ T agave nectar (or sweetener of choice)
The apples were bought and grown locally at Wallingford’s Orchard.
- Using an apple corer (like one here), core apples, leaving the skin on. (You can peel them — it’s just add work!) Cut the cored apple into quarters.
- Place the apples in a food processor. Pulverize pieces to get about 1/4 inch chunks or smaller. With the food processor, some apples pieces will be larger than others. This is perfectly fine; the large pieces will condense later on!
- Add apples, 1/8 c of water, and then all remaining ingredients to a large pot on high heat. (Add in both cinnamon stick and cloves whole.)
- Stir continuously. Make sure there is a thin layer of liquid on the bottom of the pan to prevent burning. Add water sparingly because it will naturally cook-out of the apples. I started with 1/8 c cider and 1/8 c water, allowed the sauce to simmer, and then added another 1/8 c of water since the bottom of the pan was dry.
- Once the thin layer of liquid is boiling, reduce apple mixture to low heat to a simmer. Stir every 5 min.
- After about 20 min. or when the apple pieces are soft, take a potato masher and mash the apple pieces until the applesauce has the consistency you’d like. If you peel the apples, this sauce will be much more homogenous.
- Stir in the agave nectar or sweetener of your choice.
- Let applesauce cool slightly before serving.