Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Apples! From Orchard to Applesauce

Every fall we visit a lovely orchard near Madison, WI. Though just outside the city, Door Creek Orchard is surrounded by rolling hills and woodland and features upper and lower orchard areas. The beautiful rural setting is one of the reasons we continue to go back, year after year. The owners of the orchard also raise Black Welsh Mountain sheep (a rare breed not seen much in North America). I'm not sure what part of the excursion my kids love more -- picking apples or visiting the sheep!

We used some of our pick-your-own apples to make homemade applesauce. I like to make applesauce in small batches that we can eat immediately. Someday maybe I'll try canning.

When making applesauce, I don't peel the apples. It's an unnecessary step if you're planning on straining after cooking. (Technically, you wouldn't need to remove the seeds either, but my kids like to play with the seeds while the apples are cooking.)

Quarter 10-12 apples and add 1 cup of water to the pan. Allow the apples to simmer covered for about 8-10 minutes or until soft.

While we waited for the apples to cook, we made words out of the apple seeds.

We use a cone and pestle stainless steel strainer (also called chinois or china cap set) to strain the applesauce and remove the skins. This is an old-fashioned method of straining, but it really works well for small batches and the kids enjoy smashing the pulp with the pestle.

The McIntosh apples were sweet enough that we didn't need to add any sugar to our applesauce!

Find more of this week's Wordless Wednesday (or Wordful) posts at 5 Minutes for Mom.


An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Very neat strainer! I think the blender is probably faster, but that looks like fun :)

Prasti said...

this post makes me excited to go apple picking! we have plans to go this weekend. last year we picked 25 lbs. (yikes), and also made some into applesauce. i've never tried your technique before. we usually use a crock pot, but we do peel beforehand since we don't strain afterward.

Amy said...

my friend has made homemade apple sauce for me and it is yummy...

glad you had fun at the farm...

yeah my little guy is not so little anymore..

MaryAnne said...

That strainer looks like a lot of fun! I also love the way you spelled words with the seeds!