My mom has had the same applesauce colander for as long as I can remember. When I got married, we didn't really know where to look for one. On one of our visits to Iowa, Rob went with his dad and grandfather to an auction. He found me an applesauce colander (I think he paid less than $2). Before I started typing this post, I did a google search for "applesauce colander" - apparently, what I have and call an applesauce colander is, in fact, a Chinois [with stand] and retails for $59.99. Here is the link, if you're interested in a food mill or Chinois.
|My "Chinois" (who knew?)|
Basically, to make applesauce, there are three simple steps: cut and cook the apples, puree them through a strainer, and add sugar. I bought a 1/2 bushel of apples from a local orchard, they were mixed seconds - for $10.00. The mix of apples included MacIntosh, Honeycrisp, Gala, and Smokehouse.
|no peeling or coring required|
I typically cut my apples into 6 equal pieces, boil them in a large stockpot until very tender and then process them through my colander [into a large bowl]. You may need to add extra "cooking water" in order to achieve your desired consistency. Mine is definitely not as thick as the commercial applesauce - you'll have to just taste and see what you prefer.
I start by adding about 1/2 cup of sugar and stir, pausing to taste. I then adjust accordingly. I have heard rumors of people adding vanilla, a tablespoon of butter, and various spices. I have always enjoyed my applesauce with plain old sugar and it's great. I also heard a rumor last night that some people don't even add sugar. I prefer to eat my applesauce without puckering, thank you very much.
|the finished product - a little taste of fall|
So, if you're inclined - go for it, you'll enjoy your applesauce well into the winter months, and the smell in your kitchen will last longer than the sticky spots on your floor (hopefully). Now, I'm off to scrub my kitchen floor. Really.