Here’s how to make simple home-made applesauce. It is super easy. Here’s what you need to know about which varieteis to choose, and how to make it smooth without a foodmill. Seriously, just apples and water are all you need for this apple sauce recipe. It is as simple as it gets. You can always doctor it up after you make it by adding in some cinnamon, honey or maple syrup.
“Fanatical” would be an understatement in describing how I feel about apples. I eat one every day. I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of them. They are in my top three picks for what I’d choose to have on a desert island. Even though I am really into buying local and seasonal ingredients I am ashamed to admit that I even eat them when they’re not in season here in Vermont.
Right now I am tittering with excitement over the fact that there are loads of local varieties available. It is early in the season, so I am going gaga for a new one called a Zester! It is great for eating out of hand like its relative the Honeycrisp (which won’t be ready for another week or so.) Later in the season, I will be all over the Macouns and Honeycrisp. At the tail end of the season I’m sure to stock up on Mutsus, which are great storing apples. They are giant golden apples with a rosy blush with loads of crisp floral flavor.
Cooking apples are a different story. One trick my mom learned in the apple business is that when cooking apples, layering flavor is important. So mixing a few different varieties builds a more complex flavor. For apple pie or crisp I like to use at least two varieties. Depending what’s available, I like to choose one more firm variety (like a Granny Smith, Gala or Ginger Gold) and a softer variety (like Paula Red or Macintosh.)
And then there is applesauce. MacIntosh is the only way to go here folks. They have delicious fruity sweet-tart flavor and practically melt when cooked with a little water. If you have a foodmill you don’t even have to peel them before saucing them. If you don’t have a foodmill, just peel and core the apples before you cook them and then mash with a potato masher or puree in a food processor. If you’re feeling ambitious, feel free to add in another apple variety for complexity. Depending on how sweet your Macs are (they get sweeter the longer they are stored) you may have to add a little honey or maple syrup to the sauce to balance it.
Simple apple sauce, just apples and water. Choose which method to use with either a food mill, food processor or potato masher. Add cinnamon and honey to taste.
- 6 cups saucing apples, such as Macintosh (4 to 5 pounds)
- 1/2 cup water
- Cut apples in half and remove seeds with melon baller. Cut into quarters. Place in large heavy-bottomed soup pot with water. Cover and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the apples are completely broken down. Process through food mill and discard seeds. Alternatively, if you do not have a food mill, peel and core apples. Continue with cooking instructions and process with food processor or potato masher to desired consistency.