Pioneer Woman at Heart

One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Friday, September 26, 2014

Homemade Applesauce

I was starving for a good breakfast, so I tossed onions, potatoes, green pepper and zucchini in a pan to cook for
another omelet.  

While the veggies softened, I cut up nine pounds of organic red delicious apples.  I simply core them, and quarter them, and heat with a bit of water.  I then run it through my sauce maker and put it back on the stove to thicken. I do not add anything to my applesauce.  The kids typically sprinkle organic cinnamon on it when they eat it anyway.

I got 6 pints of canned applesauce.    But it wasn't easy.

URRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHH!  May I vent for a moment?

The brand new burner I replaced gave out on me.  It was heating, but not all the way to "high."  I had just put all the jars back in the canner and I noticed nothing was happening for an overly long time period.  I switched it to the back burner, and prayed.  After a few minutes I leaned over to see if the burner was getting red.  Yep.  Only I saw flames.  Something in the burner pan was on fire.  No biggy I thought.  I pulled the canner off, and looked.  Whatever it was, it appeared to be something spilled that went down under the burner pan.  I sprinkled a bit of baking soda to dowse the flames, and put the canner pot back on.  I prayed again.  Was this really happening?  I cannot afford a new stove.  I cannot.  My winter prep list is stressing me out, and now THIS?!

I'll need to make applesauce a few more times before the snow arrives, but if the back burner gives out, I am in trouble.

Why make applesauce myself?  It eliminates chemicals, saves us money, and it's very versatile.   I use it for baking (waffles, pancakes, muffins, breads, cookies), in place of oil in many recipes, on meat dishes, for a side for breakfast, lunch or dinner, snacking, topping for gingerbread and other baked goodies, and even for applesauce and peanut butter sandwiches.  Organic applesauce here, costs about $4 for about a pint size jar.  I can buy three pounds of organic apples and get two pints. 

As a kid my Grandma on the Dad's side, would bring us a bushel basket of apples from her tree.  I was taught how to make applesauce using a metal strainer and pressing the apples through it by hand.  

Yesterday, I cut more spearmint to dry for winter teas, and took down my dried rosemary to put in a jar. 

The "garlic guy" was not at the last Farmer's Market. I am told many people had a bad garlic year, along with apples.  I am almost out of my garlic powder, so I am on the hunt for garlic (organic of course).  I use it all winter long.  Now I could go to the store and buy some, but what's the fun in that? Right?

Today I am Thankful for:
~ getting text messages from both my older soldier kids
~ for the perfect weather to work in the garden
~ for our garden bounty, what a blessing it is this year
~ God's Guidance
~ for having enough pint jars on hand to can the applesauce
~ for my sauce maker
~ the back burner that still works on the stove
~ windows
~ flowers all around us
~ the front porch


Mama Pea said...

We had only a little applesauce last year because our apple crop didn't mature properly. This year we have only about 7 apples on as many trees! A bummer of an apple year. But we're trying to get hold of a couple bushels of organic apples which are due to be harvested in a couple of weeks. Then we should be in applesauce heaven for the winter! We eat a lot of it as a "dessert" during the winter.

Here's hoping your stove burner hangs in there. Having appliances go on the fritz is the pits. :o(

Kristina said...

Mama Pea, I love applesauce as a dessert. Yum. I just had some too. Next time I see organic apples, I'm snatching them up. Praying my stove holds out for me too.

Cris said...

If you lived closer, I'd let you borrow my single burner "hot plate". I lucked into it at a garage sale for $5, but you can find similar versions at any store that sells small appliances. I park it outside on a concrete paving stone, and use it to run my canner in really hot weather (I also use it to boil down maple syrup). It's basically a large size single electric burner--and is far cheaper than getting a whole new stove. If you get in a pinch with your stove not cooperating, investing in one of these single burners might get you through your winter prep/canning season!

Michelle said...

Have you tried cooking it over night in your crock pot. I do it in mine every year and it turns out great. This year I found garlic ( organic ) for 3 dollars for 3 pound. In this area that's a good price. I stored some but most of it was turned into garlic powder. So much better then the stores. I am going to try your omelet recipe tomorrow, it sounds really good.

Kristina said...

Michelle and Cris, thank you both for your tips and suggestions. The single burner is a great idea too!