Friday, September 25, 2009

apples, apples, apples!

I'm back!! Our new computer was just delivered and it is blazing fast! I can have more than one program open at a time! It downloads pictures from my camera in seconds! (Thanks to our friend Luis!) I could go on, but what I've been dying to do for weeks is post about what we've been up to. It will be a trip back through time (over the next many days) but I'll start with what we've been up to for the last couple days: apples.

On Wednesday Jeremy picked a TON of apples. We didn't weigh them, but we're thinking maybe around 50 pounds. They were from two trees at a friend's house.

So we got to work coring and peeling and coring and peeling TONS of apples

We put them in a big pot to cook...

(Note: don't actually put this many apples in a pot to cook 'cause it's really hard to stir and you might burn your batch of apples)

Cook, cook, cook, simmer, simmer, add some cinnamon, cloves, and a little brown sugar.

Here is just some of the applesauce we made (after a spin through the blender):

We've been making applesauce since yesterday and have 18 pints of it so far. We might make some more tomorrow. I also made an apple pie this evening:

We ran a LOT of apples (and apple cores) through the juicer to make apple juice. We've got 10 quarts of apple juice.

It was a big apple day for us: applesauce, apple juice, and apple pie! And on top of that, Jeremy made a fantastic dinner, a ragout bolognaise (a sauce made of onions, garlic, celery, ground pork, tomatoes, green peppers, white wine, and heavy cream) over whole wheat pasta - my man takes care of me!

It's amazing that I wanted to have anything to do with apples after Wednesday. A friend from Meeting came over with several buckets of crab apples and some elderberries. He wanted to learn how to make jelly. Some of those crab apples were the size of cherries, they were so tiny!

Here's Charlie juicing elderberries and getting ready to juice more apples.

I wouldn't be surprised if elderberries could be used as a natural die, the colors were so fantastic.

We came out with 16 teeny tiny jars of apple jelly and elderberry jelly and I sent Charlie home with the rest of the juice to make even more!

We have about two dozen of our own apples left and we're debating what to do with them. More applesauce? Give them away? More apple juice? More apple pie or apple dumplings? I'm sure we'll think of something, but hopefully something easy since we're supposed to pick up a large box of red bell peppers tomorrow from our friends at Loon. (Those are for roasting and freezing.) And Jeremy has a stack of eggplants in the fridge he wants to make eggplant chutney out of. Tis the season!


mom said...

You add spices to your applesauce? What sacrilege. Elderberry is good for dye for natural fibers, but you have to set it with something, can't remember what, but I know what book the info is in. Elderberries make great wine - very old time medicinal. You can can the apple slices in a light syrup for apple pie this winter. or, you can dry them - great for snacks, trail mix, and in a pinch, you can add juice to them and reconstitute them for pies. did I ever send you the recipe for Grandma Hansens Danish Apple cake? I know I sent it to amanda. Or, you can chop them up and juice them - our local apple grower freezes his juice and it keeps quite well. I always buy several gallons and stick them in the fridge for thanksgiving and christmas - just make sure there is some room at the top for expansion. then, you can give the chickens the pomace or use it in your compost heap. Yes, harvest season is very tiring, but well worth it when you step back and see all that you have done.

Aimee said...

ooh - I didn't know you could just can apple slices for apple pies, that is a great idea!

and the spices in the applesauce isn't my idea, I don't even like applesauce. So Jeremy gets to make it the way he likes it. =)

Tam said...

I leave the skins on. :) It's prettier that way too. No spices.

We just got 5 boxes of apples today from an acquaintance outside of town. I have no idea what I'm going to do. Maybe dry day and night for awhile. We did one box today and it made 3 gallons.

Too bad I gave away the juicer.