Saturday, November 1, 2014

Fall 

It's finally here, Football, Pumpkins. Apple Butter and Pecans. It sounds simple but those things pretty much sums up fall around here. Not necessarily in that order either..

The great thing about living in North Carolina is the ability to travel from the coast to the mountains without ever leaving the state. We recently took a day trip to Asheville and stopped in at their farmers market. We are frequent visitors to the State Farmers Market in Raleigh, because we have to face the fact that we can't grow everything, and I love to just browse to see the veggies and plats available, But Asheville's Market is a whole new adventure. There you can get apples direct from the Orchard and since their season is a bit ahead of ours we get a sneak peak at whats up coming!

We brought home a couple of Bushels of Early apples, Arkansas Black and Suncrisp, they make awesome Apple Butter and Apple Sauce. We fill up the counters with Crock Pots and let them do all of the hard work. By the time we're done we'll have made at least 10 dozen jars for the Fall and Christmas markets. If you're interested in making some of you're own here's an easy recipe for you to try.

Crock Pot Apple Butter
 About 5lbs of Apples (we leave the skins on since they aren't waxed)
1 to 1 /12 cups of Sugar (Depends on the Apples and your preference, Brown or White Sugar)
1 Teaspoons of ground Cinnamon
1/2 Teaspoon of ground Cloves
1/2 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar.

Core and Chop the Apples. Place then in the Crock Pot and cook on a medium heat for about an hour.
Once they have begun to soften add your spices and vinegar. Cook on a medium heat for 8 to 10 hours depending on the apples. They will be dark brown. We use and immersion blender to get a smooth butter. You can leave the lid off for the last hour or two to get a thicker consistency. Fill your jars leaving a 1/4 inch head space. Wipe the rims clean, remove any air bubbles and place your lids.
Can be put into clean jars and kept in the refrigerator or it can be water bath canned. We process 1/2 pints for 10 minutes.  Makes about 8 1/2 pints

Great for Homemade Holiday Gifts or keep them all for yourself!