Thursday 12 September 2013

Caramel Apple Pie Filling - Canning Recipe

Well, I've never canned a meat or other animal by-product before, so this is a first.  By animal "by-product", I am referring to butter.  I've only ever canned vegetables and fruits along with vinegar and spices.  I'm pretty sure I've never even canned anything that contained honey ...

I made a really nice canned apple pie filling last year when I had bushels of apples to work with.  This time all I had was just under 4 pounds of Lobo apples left over after I made the Irish Apple Shortbread Pie posted just yesterday (actually made last weekend!).  I basically followed this one from without really thinking about the whole butter canning thing.  I just feel like it's going to spoil ... but whatever, meat gets canned all the time by commercial industries and home cooks alike, so what the heck!  What's a little bacteria amongst friends?

Here is my slightly modified version.  Repeat at your own risk!

4 lbs apples
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup butter

Peel, core and slice apples into slices - even though Lobo apples are quite firm for cooking, I really like firm, chunky apples in pies or crumbles, so I cut pretty thick slices.

Toss in a bowl or bag with the lemon juice and spices and "let mingle" for a half hour. 

In a heated pan, add the brown sugar and butter.  Once it starts to foam, add in the apple mix.  Maybe it is because the apples I used did not break down much - I certainly had no need for cornstarch as the original recipe called for since there wasn't much liquid.  So just cook until the apples are the level of tenderness that you want.

Ladle into hot, sterilized jars and follow your regular canning method, or allow to cool and freeze or refrigerate.

I wish I had more apples; this amount only made 1 1/3 litre, so enough for one BIG pie or apple crisp.  But I used 375-500 ml jars, so I'll be using this as a great warmed-up ice cream topping or to eat with yogurt and granola.

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