Nothing says fall like the smell of apples cooking. Of course pears also wanted in on the action, so here’s my recipe for spiced preserves made with either^^
If you are using home-grown apples you may wish to read about preparing them first so there are no surprises!
20 medium sized apples and/or pears (roughly 5-6 pounds)
1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
1/2 Tablespoon powdered ginger
1/2 Tablespoon nutmeg
1/2 Tablespoon allspice
1/2 Tablespoon cloves
pinch of salt (1/4 teaspoon)
1/3 cup water or apple juice
1/2 cup dark honey or molasses. It’s plenty sweet without it^^
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon or other citrus zest
1, Peel the fruit if desired and remove cores. Cut fruit into 2 cm (a little smaller than an inch) cubes and dump in crock-pot. You should have about 16 cups worth of cubes; if you have a little too much or not quite enough it’s ok^^
2, Add all spices, water, and any optional ingredients you want. Turn on high and come back in 4-6 hours^^
3, Put the cooked apples in a food processor or blender and process until the fruit is smooth and no hunks of peel are visible.
4, You want the apple or pear butter to look like applesauce (which it basically is, but better^^). If it looks watery or is too thin put it back in the crock pot on high until it has thickened.
5, If you are going to can the apple or pear butter spoon it into 1/2 or full pint jars. Wipe the rims of the jars clean, put the lids on, then place in a pan with water and bring to a boil. Boil them for at least 15 minutes, then remove from heat and let them cool (not in the fridge, on the counter or somewhere like that!). Make sure that any that didn’t seal properly are put in the fridge.
This recipe makes about 2 quarts of apple or pear butter.