Apple Butter and a Cat

My other beautiful cat was reading my blog today and decided that there was not enough about her in here. She demanded that I take her picture, add it to the blog and include a little something about her. (I'm a little concerned however, can you see how she seems to be squinting? Maybe I need to get her some reading glasses?) Well I hope this post will satisfy her vanity. Probably not, I should include that she has a beautiful voice which she uses to wake me up every morning so that she can get her treats. She also loves to keep fit by running around the house like a mad woman at very random times, usually at night. You always know she is coming because she has these lovely paws which are HUGE and alert you to her coming. We affectionately call her "Sasquatch."

Canning takes forever! Well at least for me it does. However the results are quite delicious and I should remember that before I complain too much. Friday I purchased apples at the farmers market, and then Monday morning I sat down with the apple slicer and chopped up enough apples for two batches of apple butter. I still have enough left for another two batches but I think those apples are telling me they just want to be eaten - or made into a pie, but not butter. My dear neighbor came over and chatted with me for a bit while I sliced and peeled apples and it did make the time go a bit faster. I decided to make a batch of chili at the same time because it was raining and I think rainy days are good chili days. The chili was so good that I forgot to take a picture of it before it was all eaten and/or put away. I put a couple containers of it into the freezer so I will have to see about adding a picture later when I pull them out on another stormy day.

After chopping up 8 lbs of apples (I weighed them on my wonderful digital scale that I just can't seem to cook without), and then cooked the apples. The recipe I was following (which is USDA approved - I must practice what I preach at the Fair) called for me to add water to the apples as they were cooking and I don't remember doing this in the past. I must have added water because I "always" follow the recipe - ha ha ha ha ha hoo hoo hee hee. Sorry, I'm up off the floor now and wiping the tears from my eyes. The other recipe I found added vinegar, and I don't ever remember putting vinegar into my apple butter so this must be the recipe I followed last year. Vinegar in apple butter just sounds very very wrong!

After cooking the apples down and adding sugar, cinnamon and a bit of cloves, I had other things to do and so the pot went into the fridge. Tuesday the apple butter sat in the fridge with a dip or two being removed for toast. Yum. Wednesday I pulled out the jelly jars, put them in the dishwasher, and put the pot back on the stove to heat up. Once the jars were nice and clean and the butter was hot I filled the seven jars that would fit into my water bath canner and carried the whole mess to my dear neighbor's house. My glass top stove does not recommend using it for canning, and so I wasted her electricity instead. I did give her a jar of butter to help ease the pain.

I will have to wait another day or two to process the other batch as I am off to work this morning and then have kids here all afternoon. A whole week of work for 14 jelly jars of butter! The apple butter isn't as dark as I remember it being last year. I can't quite figure out if that is because of the variety of apples I used or because of adding water to the apples when they were cooking. It's a mystery for now. Actually the color really bugs me. In my mind apple butter should be a chocolatey brown, not this orangey yucky brown. Ugh, after all this work I guess I'll just have to close my eyes when I eat it!


Anonymous said…
ok, now I will see if this works or not. Couldn't leave a blog before. Hey, can you give me a lesson or two on canning? I remeber mom canning and storing the jars full of goodies in the basement. She used a pressure cooker then. I bought a blue book and I want to buy the jars but like I said, I really don't know what I'm doing and hate to invest in all this if I can't do it. So please help if you can. Thanks marie

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