An apple a day...

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Or for the next year. 

I bought one of those family value bags of apples at the store a while back and of course completely forgot about it. I'm not even a huge apple fan but I think I had big baby food plans? Who really knows... Wegmans makes me really ambitious.

So what did we do today?! We made apples all damn day. 

Apple baby food. Applesauce. Apple butter. Apple & pork burgers?! 
Oh hell yes.

For Hadley's food I just steamed a bunch of peeled, cored apples and pureed them with a little cinnamon. She dominates adult-size bowls of it. You do you, girlfriend.

For the applesauce I quartered 12 apples (with the skin) and cooked them down in a large pot with 1 cup of water over medium-high heat. Add in 3 tbsps of sugar (or brown sugar) and dash of kosher salt. Cook them for about 30 minutes partially covered until they are nice and tender. Then blend them until smooth. 

Add 2 tbsps of butter, cinnamon to taste (I did probably 2 tsps worth), dash of nutmeg, dash of allspice and 1 tsp of maple syrup. All of this is completely optional... this is the first time I've used butter with my applesauce and I think I actually like it better without. You can also cook the apples with apple cider or juice instead of water. 

Side note: if you don't have a gazillion apples on hand you can easily make small batches... just eyeball the sugar and add ins! 

Mix everything together and there you go! 

Now you'll need about 4 cups of this to make your apple butter. 

I've never had apple butter in my life so you can imagine my excitement to try this. Josh told me his grandma used to make pear butter all the time and said it smelled divine. This butter has been cookin' on my stovetop for a while now and I promise you this... it does smells AHmazing.

For the apple butter, cook 1/2 cup of sugar in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once the sugar turns a dark amber color add in your 4 cups of applesauce. Cook this over medium heat for about 45 minutes until it reduces by half.

As I said... this is my first apple butter experience and I can promise you it won't be my last. Spread that bad boy on toast, pancakes, breakfast sandwiches. Use it as a dip for graham crackers. Use it as a filling for cookies or on a cheese and cracker platter. Use it however your little heart pleases. Eat it straight out the jar if the mood strikes. It's striking me right now...........

And FINALLY the apple-pork burgers. 

Woah. I love a good burger but sometimes I really want to mix it up in the flavor department. This does just that. 

What you need...

1 lb ground pork
1 apple, peeled and shredded
1/2 lb uncased breakfast sausage
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
Swiss cheese to top
Avocado to top
Bacon to top
Fresh apple slices to top
Spicy mustard to top
Buns (the bread kind)

What you do...

Combine the pork, apple shreds, sausage, garlic, salt and pepper. 

Form into patties and cook on medium-high heat 4 minutes each side. Place a piece of swiss cheese on top so it melts.

Now comes the fun part. Top that sucker with some bacon (because why not?!), avocado, spicy mustard and fresh apple slices. It's a flavor EXPLOSION. The texture of the crisp apple is so nice too. 

I hope you too have forgotten about 5 lbs of apples in your pantry and now have the ammunition you need to deal with it. 

Apple lovin' to you all,

These recipes were adapted from the Food Network


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