I know that sounds impossible, but I have a large box of Cortland apples waiting to be used and there's only so much strudel we can eat. Since I have two gallons of cider waiting to be turned into boiled syrup, I might as well make Sweet Cider Apple Butter. Really, the only difference from regular apple butter is replacing the two cups of water with cider, and reducing the sugar by a cup. Still, it will help use up some of the apples and with family coming to visit in just under two weeks, it will be nice to have on hand for quick breakfasts.
I started planning the menu (we're doing our Thanksgiving on the 15th so people don't have to travel across the country on that busy weekend) and frankly, once I got past a couple of roast ducks and the usual trimmings I was stumped. We still need to feed them before the holiday ("Hey, Mom and Dad, here's ten bucks, go get yourselves a couple of Runzas" probably won't do) and I just can't think of a darned thing. I have a very large salt cod that could be made into chowder, or mini fish-pies, but that isn't terribly sophisticated, is it? I probably will resort to goat-meat tamales because it's something they probably can't get at home.
Every year when my sister-in-law visits I make some frightening jell-o based dessert. She likes jell-o. I'm thinking of making the Crown Jewels cake again because she wasn't here to enjoy it last time. You can view that little project HERE.
Anyway, I'll put up some apple butter today and try to figure out what to do with the rest. As always, I'm open to suggestions.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
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I can't remember if Cortlands are baking apples or not. If so you can make some apple pie/cobbler filling and put it up in the freezer for holiday baking; then it becomes a cinch to throw a pie together.
I'm fond of honeycrisp apples, and I recently bought a 20LB. box from the farmer's market. I made about 8 jars of blueberry-gingered applesauce (which goes really well with braised pork chops), about 5 pints of spiced apple butter, and then I turned the rest of the apples into pie filling (by slow-cooking the sliced apples on the stove just until juices are released--with brown sugar, cinnamon, fresh ginger, and lemon juice). Once cooled, I measured out 2LBS. of filling into freezer bags (I think I got about 4 or 5 two-pound bags)--which makes a nice, towering pie--and froze them for later use during the holiday season.
That's an awesome idea-I never thought of making pie filling ahead and freezing it. I do make quite a few pies through the year, so that's perfect-thank you.
I like Honeycrisp as well, but boy are they expensive around here. I just tried my first one this year and was really impressed.
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