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Those good with preserving stuff - apples?

(25 Posts)
BellaOfTheBalls Sat 24-Sep-16 21:32:51

I make hampers of homemade stuff at Christmas and will often use stuff that I have foraged/been given to make things like jam etc. Thanks to an obliging hedge, thus far I've made large amounts of damson jam and spiced apple chutney.

My dad usually posts me a large box of quinces around this time so will make jelly from those and mum has several apple trees and has offered me as many apples as I can physically pick/carry. So as I've already done chutney and jam and am likely to do a jelly, what would you do with the apples? Has anyone ever made/tasted apple butter?

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Sat 24-Sep-16 21:37:48

I find freezing them ready prepped is most useful because then you can rustle up a quick pudding through the rest of the year! But I realise that's not much help if you want to give them as presents, sorry!

BellaOfTheBalls Sat 24-Sep-16 21:41:06

I had thought of that countess but I don't have vast amounts of freezer space. I could do that and then make something like apple cakes closer to Christmas though so it's a possibility.

nooka Sat 24-Sep-16 22:13:09

I've made apple butter before, very yummy. I have four apple trees so sometimes have a lot of apples. This year I have made lots of apple sauce (good for windfalls) and ten jars of apple preserve (lightly cooked sliced apples ready to go into pies and crumbles). I've still lots lots of apples and I'm planning on apple and ginger marmalade which I've made before and probably an apple chutney.

welshgirlwannabe Sat 24-Sep-16 22:16:29

I've both made and eaten apple butter. It is delicious and very popular in America where I'm from. Plenty of recipes online and it uses more apples than a similar quantity of jam or chutney which can be useful of you have a glut!

Pumpkin butter is good as well.

nooka Sat 24-Sep-16 22:31:44

I made plum butter a couple of years ago which was also really good. Not tried pumpkin, sounds like it would be delicious.

BellaOfTheBalls Sat 24-Sep-16 23:14:56

I've been googling and apple butter does sound delicious. I'm envisaging lots cinnamon and clove to make it really Christmassy tasting, ready for tea and hot buttered toast after a long walk in crisp air I know it'll do nothing but rain but a girl can dream

TheSpottedZebra Sat 24-Sep-16 23:19:19

What do you do with apple butter? And how long would it keep, if you just jar it like a jam, and don't 'can' it? It's not as sugary as jam, is it, so won't keep as long?

I too have lots of apples!

annandale Sat 24-Sep-16 23:23:17

DH makes blackberry and apple jelly most years, and has done apple and sloe gin jelly I think.

If you have a cold place like an attic, wrap them in paper and keep them, if they're the right sort.

For presents, maybe dried apple rings might be nice?

nooka Sun 25-Sep-16 00:04:53

TheSpottedZebra I've found it keeps just fine, have had some for two or three years in the store cupboard without issues. American jam recipes always say you need to boil all your jars but they are paranoid about hygiene.

I grew up in the UK and my mother and grandmother used old commercial jam jars topped with cellophane paper held on with rubber bands. Sometimes there was mould which got scraped off hmm we were all fine. Americans worry about botulism but it's pretty rare on home preserves, much more likely to be caught from store salad leaves which are very popular here (I'm in Canada now). I am very careful to sterilize my jars, fill with very hot jam and I use lids that 'ping' to show they seal properly. I think that's good enough really.

Anyway you use fruit butters instead of butter and jam as they are quite silky and rich. Lovely on things like crumpets.

nooka Sun 25-Sep-16 00:19:29

Here's the recipe I used a couple of years ago:

2.25kg apples
500 ml of apple juice or cider
1 1/2 to 2 cups brown sugar (or metric 360-475 ml)
2 tbs lemon juice (30ml)
1 tbs cinnamon (15ml)
1/2 tbs (2.5 ml) cloves, allspice and nutmeg

Core and cop the apples roughly, combine with cider/juice bring to boil and simmer for 2o mins until apples are tender. Cool and then push the mix through a sieve or food mill. Then for every cup of puree add half to 2/3 a cup of sugar, add lemon juice and then simmer the mixture for 35-45 mins until it's nice and thick. Add spices in the last 10 mins. Jar up.

I tend to do all my preserves to taste. Add the sugar slowly until it tastes perfect. If your mix gets too sweet add more lemon juice. I tend to just use a pinch of cloves as it's a very strong taste, and I think I used ginger as I didn't have any all spice.

ds has just asked if I might make some more smile

Also looking for good apple chutney recipes.

HorraceTheOtter Sun 25-Sep-16 00:28:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Qwebec Sun 25-Sep-16 04:14:15

Oh since your apple are probably not treated you could do pink apple sauce (you leave the skin when it cooks) I have not notice a big difference in taste, but itlooks lovely.
I've tasted apple butter and found it terribly sweet.

TheSpottedZebra Sun 25-Sep-16 16:59:08

nooka thank you!

I (mistakenly) thought that there was less sugar, hence query over longevity. But actually that's a bit, isn't it, so would keep well.

Yum. I'm going to make some. Maybe tomorrow.

ProfYaffle Sun 25-Sep-16 17:03:24

Apple butter can be quite bland but it makes a good base for other flavours, mixing it with blackberries or damsons is nice.

You can do the same trick with apple jelly too, use it as a base for things like rose hips or lavender. Those types of jellies are nice with cheese so it's a bit of a variation on a simple sweet jam/jelly.

ProfYaffle Sun 25-Sep-16 17:04:08

Oh and yy to pickled apples. Again nice with cold meats and cheese. For future reference, pickled damsons are lush.

BellaOfTheBalls Sun 25-Sep-16 17:40:41

Thanks for all the replies. I ended up with 10lbs of apples and made apple butter. I used 500ml cider vinegar and about 1kg sugar plus lots of spices and have to say I'm not overly impressed, it doesnt taste like jam cause of the vinegar but is too sweet to be a chutney. I think it will probably be delicious with anything salty; ham, butter, cheese etc.

However DS1 was scooped all the last little bits out of a pan with a spoon, so what do I know?!

DoreenLethal Sun 25-Sep-16 17:43:26

Apple juice or cider. Not cider vinegar!

ProfYaffle Sun 25-Sep-16 17:57:15

I've never used cider vinegar whenever I've made it!

BellaOfTheBalls Sun 25-Sep-16 18:04:01

Loads of the recipes I saw online said cider vinegar?! Eeek! I may get more sugar tomorrow and reboil

ProfYaffle Sun 25-Sep-16 18:19:00

I generally use Marguerite Pattern's book. I've just re-checked, def no cider vinegar in hers. I have found a note I made a few years ago though, adding generous amounts of whiskey and ginger were very nice!

nooka Sun 25-Sep-16 19:12:21

Cider vinegar plus lots of sugar sounds an interesting combination! Not sure what I'd do with that, but just to note that chutneys usually take at least a month for the flavour to mature so it might taste much better in a few weeks.

DoreenLethal Sun 25-Sep-16 21:38:44

I think the cider vinegar might be some sort of mistype?

bookbook Mon 26-Sep-16 20:31:15

I made apple butter a couple of years ago, in a trial when I had too many apples. I wasn't too happy with the result - really too sweet for me , and over spiced, though that is a personal taste thing I suppose.( I used apple juice in mine) I ended up using it up by mixing it with more cooking apples to make puddings.

nooka Tue 27-Sep-16 01:39:47

Apple varieties vary a lot in sweetness which may be part of the issue. I tend to only add half of the sugar suggested in any preserving recipe and then check for taste as I don't have a very sweet tooth and it's much harder to take sweetness out than add it in, although lemon juice works quite well.

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