One just can’t help extolling the virtues of home mades. The best bit about home made goodies is the amount of control it gives to the person making it. Using ingredients you like , combinations you prefer, increasing or decreasing the amount of particular ingredients according to preferences, the list is endless. And most of all, keeping out all those funny sounding ingredients that can be found in store boughts; yes, you do not need to compromise. I admit, home made goodies, may, at times, take up some time, but in the end, isn’t it worth all the trouble? And some of the things that we buy are actually very easy to whip up in the kitchen.
Now, talking of home mades, I make my own applesauce…
many of you must be doing so too. It does not take that much time, and the end result is so much better than store bought. I usually keep it simple, just apples, honey and lemon juice and sometimes without the honey or lemon juice. According to my mood, I add some spices into them as well…cinnamon and crushed red chillies are my favourites. I also keep it smooth or chunky as per my requirement. The sweetness can be adjusted according to preference. I use whatever apples I have on hand. But I do try to keep away from very tart ones like Granny Smiths. Naturally sweet apples mean that you do not have to add too much of additional sweetness. In fact, in some cases, I do not add any sweetness to the applesauce. I usually make small amounts when needed.
The following is my basic recipe for a smooth applesauce ( I used gala apples), it makes about 1 and 1/3 C of smooth applesauce…modify it as you wish-
3 apples, washed, peeled ( you can keep the peels on if you wish), cored and cut into small pieces( should be about 3C)
3 tblsp of honey (more or less)
1 tsp of lemon juice
- Place all the ingredients in a thick bottomed pan and place over medium heat. Stir well.
- Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for about 12-15 minutes or till the apples are very soft ( should go mushy when touched). Keep stirring in between.
- Remove from heat and mash or puree in a food processor for a smooth sauce.
That’s it ! Wasn’t that easy? Of course, as I said earlier, the sweetness can be adjusted according to preference, and you can spice it up too.
- My applesauce is quite thick, but you can always make it lighter by adding a little water or sugarfree apple juice.
- If you make large amounts and have leftovers, keep it in the refrigerater.
- While the apples cook, do keep checking. If the liquid dries out before the apples are cooked properly, add some more…scorching is definitely not going to enhance the taste!
- The apples in my first batch released enough moisture for them to cook without any aditional water. But the later batches needed some. In fact, to be on the safe side, I would suggest that you put in enough water to cover the bottom of the pan while putting in the chopped apples. Experiment with different apples to know how much water is needed.
I made my first batch by peeling the apples, but nowadays I do not bother. Moreover it seems such a waste of nutrients, and it does give a lovely hue too ; that is, if the peels are bright red
And yes, no dodgy and funny sounding ingredients here
And here is a nice article on how to substitute applesauce for oil or butter.