Yes, I am gloating. The free, organic apples just keep dropping into my lap and the end result could not smell better.
This week, I gleaned the last five pounds of fruit from my in-laws apple trees. It wasn't quite enough for one batch of apple butter but then I just haaaaaappend to stumble upon a lonely apple tree at a local park - drippin' with red, juicy goodness. A friend helped me glean that baby and before I knew it, I had another ten pounds.
This photo cracks me up - but what was a girl to do?
This experience in the park has sparked some thoughts for me that I want to give more consideration to - like wasted food and nutrients in the form of rotten fruit on the ground. Huh? That's just not right. Everywhere I go I see fruit trees in peoples yards dripping with fruit that is just going to go to waste and I'm guessing there are plenty of local institutions that would welcome the delivery of that produce. But more on that later - let's talk apple butter!
This time last month, I didn't even know what apple butter was. But getting the opportunity to pick thirty pounds of apples from my in-laws house changed all that. Now I make it, eat it, give it, sing about it and am about to hit the apple butter lecture circuit. (Well, not really...but for now I'm having fun.)
OH - did you NOT see my new Squeezo?!
Come, in! Come in!! Let me show you how she works:
The book said that the slooooow cooker was the way to go. So that's what I did. Just take the cooked, pureed apples, add the sugar and spice, heat it up and go about your day...and night maybe. This batch took almost 22 hours (!!) before it was thick and dark enough to can.
This is what the baby contributed to the effort - silence. Bless his tiny heart!
There you have it, folks - your Christmas gifts all lined-up!