Sunday, October 3, 2010


Have you ever made your own applesauce?  It's super simple as long as you have some time and the right equipment.  I'm not sure I'd go as far as to say that I love making applesauce, but the benefits far outweigh the sticky patches on the floor and stovetop.  The biggest problem I face is finding enough containers with matching lids in order to freeze all of the applesauce I make!  I normally process about 2 bushels of apples each fall. 

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.


  1. Oh, the treasures that Grandpa was able to find at Ralphie's auctions! Who knows what still lays out at the farm that might be worth $$$! I remember Gpa (Dad) going to the auctions every Monday night & coming home with boxes of "junk" that he'd buy for just one thing he wanted out of them! Thanks for bringing back that memory, Kirs! Good luck with the kitchen floor-I'm back out to moving/transplanting in the gardens! Happy Fall, y'all!!! I love this season! (we had frost last night, but it's a beautiful sunny day today here in Iowa!)

  2. I forgot that was the name of the auction!
    What will you be transplanting today? And, I apologize for asking again (!), but should I cut my rhubarb down to the nubbins before we get a frost? I think the temp got down to about 40 last night - so our frost will be here before too long.
    Enjoy the rest of your day!!

  3. That's the same method that I use for applesauce... I have used the food mill to make applesauce, but I like the colander much better. I'm one of the weirdos who doesn't use sugar in her applesauce AS LONG AS my apples are sweet enough. This year I'm going to try using an attachment for my Kitchen Aid to make the applesauce. I'll let you know how it goes.

  4. I've heard the honeycrisp are sweet enough to leave out sugar.
    I'm curious to hear about the kitchen aid success!

  5. I love partially frozen apple sauce. I'm going to have to check out your link and think about getting an apple colander. I've always wanted to make my own applesauce. I might try adding vanilla.

  6. Finally - a recipe of yours I dont need to try. I dont eat apple sauce.

    Hope you had fun cleaning that floor. Busy day planned at Casa Pyjamas which will include doing the same thing at some point.

  7. Emily - my kids always fight over the frozen center! Don't buy one - you can just borrow mine. I'll be done with it in a few days.

    Mrs P - the floor was clean for less than 30 seconds this time - Josh was hiding from the girls and walked across my floor while it was still wet....grrrrr. Hope yours stays clean longer. As I was on my hands and knees scrubbing, I was fantasizing about asking Rob to re-tile the kitchen and foyer with our extra brown tiles we have taking up space in the basement. Oh, to have dirt-colored tiles and grout.

  8. Kirs-I usually just let mine die back in the fall and then take the dried leaves off in the spring- I moved some plants to the new garden out front-Russ is putting up a big old fashioned windmill (40' tall) out in the hay field; so moved some day lilies & a couple bushes that needed to be moved. Will probably not get anything else moved till spring-just what I need--another garden!!