…a canning project
(And you can tell from the photo that I am a newbie canner.)
I made these lovely canned apples last fall before our move. They came together easily, and since they are processed in a water bath there wasn’t all the added stress of using a pressure canner. I used some pretty, decorative jars in case we decide to give any as Christmas gifts. After sampling them last week though, we may selfishly decide to keep them all for ourselves. They are that good.
If you are not familiar with water bath canning I strongly recommend that you consult the Ball Blue Book or your county extension office for help and direction. While I have included the directions here; the internet should never be considered a reliable source for anything to do with canning.
First off: start with a clean and quiet kitchen, shoo the dogs/kids off to play on their own, turn on some nice music (“An Apple For the Teacher” by Bing Crosby is appropriate), put on a pretty apron, and set to work.
You will need:
4 cups granulated sugar
3 cups water
4-1/2 lb firm red apples, cored, cut into rings or small pieces, treated to prevent browning and drained (about 14 medium). If you have a peeler, corer, slicer, doo-dad this process will go relatively quickly. Be sure to keep your cores to toss in your kitchen compost bin.
1 cup brandy
6 (16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands
Prepare your boiling water canner. If you have a pressure canner, it can also be used for water bath canning. Just fill with the needed amount of water and set the lid on top. No need to bolt it down or wear a protective helmet.
Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use, but do not boil. Set the bands aside.
Combine sugar and water in a large stainless steel saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.
Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring to dissolve sugar, about 5 minutes.Add apples and return to a boil. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring occasionally, until apples are slightly tender.
Remove from heat.
Remove apples from syrup using a slotted spoon, and place in a large glass or stainless steel bowl. Return syrup to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat and stir in brandy.
Pack hot apples loosely into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Ladle hot syrup into jars to cover apples leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight.
Process jars in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool.
Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.
*Serve as a compote dressed with heavy, raw cream and serve alongside turkey or poultry.
*Use as a topping for pound cake, waffles, or pancakes.
*Serve with pork chops or a pork roast.
Recipe adapted from FreshPreserving.com