Sunday, October 16, 2011

Apple Butter

Our daughter Trista was supposed to come for a visit. She lives in England and we rarely see her so we had a fun-filled month of activities jam-packed into three days. We were going to go apple picking at a local apple farm and then make stuff with the fresh picked apples. I had enough plans for many people over many days, but we would manage to fit it all in to 3 days!!!

So of course, Trista got sick and had to cancel her flight. In the meantime, her sister Tara had traded days with a co-worker and had plans to come and enjoy the visit with Trista. So Lee, Tara and I had all the fun ourselves in a frenzy of enjoyment and gluttony.

After a morning spent picking apples in a mostly picked over orchard, we came home and tried to peel and core them with my handy dandy machine that I got in California and had used many times for pies and cakes and mostly for peeled apple slices for the day care kids I watched. When I pulled it out, one of the three prongs that hold the apples in place was broken and when I tried to use it with just the two and a half left, one more broke off. How did the metal get weaker over time? Perhaps one broke in our move and then the other two were unable to stand the strain. At any rate Tara and I had to peel and slice the apples by hand. Not a terrible ordeal, but it took longer than I had anticipated.

I used two or three recipes on crock pot apple butter and here is what we used.

Crock Pot Apple Butter

10 cups finely chopped apples
2 1/2 cups sugar I used a mix of granulated and brown
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

I mixed everything in the crock pot and turned to high for one hour and then low for the rest of the night. In the morning I tried to whisk it smooth, but then had to use the food mill to make it smooth enough.

We then canned the apple butter and it made 4 cups.
I absolutely couldn't let Tara leave with out trying my latest favorite appetizer.

White Chocolate, Brie and Marmalade Phyllo Cups.

It's easy peasy and so delicious.

First you can buy the phyllo cups and then chop up a bit of brie. Place 5 or 6 white chocolate chips in the bottom of the cups. Then a small portion of brie. Top it with a bit of orange marmalade and bake it in a 350 oven for 7 or 8 minutes.

Eating it is a timing issue. You want it warm enough to have the brie all melty and gooey and yet not so hot as to burn the roof of your mouth. The crispness of the phyllo adds just the right bite. I may have to try them with brie and caramelized onions and maybe some sweet hot mustard! I hate being on a low carb diet!