Recently we were blessed to be able to harvest from two apple trees at the home of a relative’s neighbour. The neighbour is ill and in the hospital, so the apples are just slowly falling to waste. Armed with baskets, and snacks, we went for a harvest day and picked what we could reach, being careful to pick only what we could reach with our arms extended or by climbing a limb, so that the smaller among us would have plenty to pick as well.
The first thing requested was apple french toast, followed by apple muffins, and finally applesauce. Thanks to Aimée at Simple Bites, we decided to not only add cinnamon to our sauce, but also vanilla – whole vanilla bean. This made for a decadent and beautiful applesauce and I’m not sure we can ever go back to sauce without vanilla again.
Below are the steps we take to make our sauce:
Wash the apples in water and a splash of vinegar.
We keep prep really simple and just cut off any bad spots, before tossing them in the pot. Add 1 cup of water for 6 lbs of apples, adjusting for how thick or thin you like your sauce. Toss in cinnamon and one vanilla bean, scored open to release the vanilla flecks.
Cook down the apples on medium-low heat until they are soft enough to mill.
Place the mill over a bowl or pot, scoop the apples in, and mill, getting out as much sauce as you can.
Using a funnel, scoop the milled sauce into clean canning jars. We don’t actually can our sauce; in preference of keeping things simple, we freeze it and take out a jar the night before we want it.
Beautiful applesauce with vanilla bean flecks. We hope that the apple tree owner will enjoy a gratefully gifted jar or two of this sauce soon!