Once upon a time last weekend I decided to stop at the Red Barn Farm outside of Westin, MO. I was in search of peaches as the giant sign along the road said peaches and sweet corn. Upon my entering the Red Barn, I was surprised to see apples on the giant sign noting the fresh available fruit. I was then informed that the giant storm that went through the area the night before had knocked a significant amount of apples off the trees and were being sold as pick from the ground 1/2 bushel for only $10. Sign me up. I don't even need to know the normal price for apples available still on the tree. I will gladly take those seconds off the ground. After a short long while in the orchard picking up amazing apples off the ground I went on my merry sweaty way home with my bushel of apples ready for the greatest creation to come from a tree, applesauce.
Applesauce is seriously one of the easiest things to make and preserve as well. First, one must simply wash the apples, core the apples and get to cooking. We plop them all in a giant pot, add a bit of water to avoid burning and let the them steam away.
After assembling the ancient sieve mill thing we have we add the nice and soft apples into the hopper.
Then comes the turning of the handle, the apples are pressed down through the system and applesauce comes out the side while the peelings come out the end.
It's quite an amazing process. After we get a giant bowl full, then comes the tasting and altering if necessary. This year we added some cinnamon and just a touch of sugar.
A few 35 minutes of water bath canning later, we have ready to store applesauce. I should have gotten more apples. We managed to make 16 quart jars of the goodness from that bushel of apples. I'm not sure how long it will last. We shall probably be making more later in the fall when the apples are really flowing.