Tag Archives: Apples

Apple Abundance

Apple jelly jarsIf your apple season is winding down with A LOT of apples, or if you stumble into a great sale at the grocery store, then you likely have enough apples to make apple juice and/or jelly!

First, prepare apples for extracting their juice. If you plan to make jelly and use purchased pectin, then you can use all ripe apples. If you are going to make jelly and rely on only the natural pectin in apples, then use ¼ slightly under-ripe apples and ¾ just ripe apples. Make juice in small batches – about 3 pounds of apples with 3 cups water will produce 4 cups apple juice. Sort the apples, discarding damaged portions. Wash the apples and cut them into pieces, but DO NOT remove skins or cores – the pectin is most concentrated in the skins and cores.

Now you’re ready to extract the juice. Place fruit into a flat-bottomed saucepan and add one cup water per pound of apples. Bring to a boil on high heat and stir to prevent scorching. Reduce heat and cook until soft, about 20 to 25 minutes. Be careful not to overcook; too much boiling will destroy the pectin, flavor, and color.

To clarify the juice, pour the entire contents of the saucepan into a damp jelly bag and suspend the bag so that the juice drains into a large bowl. For the clearest juice (and therefore the clearest jelly), do not press or squeeze the jelly bag.

using-a-jelly-bag

Once the juice is clarified, you may freeze it. Be sure to leave 1½-inch headspace and use a moisture-proof, durable freezer container. If you think you might use the juice for jelly, then do not presweeten it before freezing.

If you want to can the juice as is, follow these directions for canning Apple Juice in a boiling water canner. (Note: you could also can local cider from a cider maker; try to can it within 24 hours after being pressed.)

Follow these directions if you want to use the juice in Apple Jelly without added pectin.

Refer to pectin product packaging and follow those directions if you prefer to make jelly with added pectin.

© Andress, E.L., Harrison, J.A., eds. (2006). So Easy to Preserve, 5th ed. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Cooperative Extension.

Fall into the Season with Home-Canned Applesauce

Applesauce is a sweet treat for little kids and big kids (also known as adults) alike.  In addition to tasting delicious, one cup of applesauce provides 12% Daily Value (DV) of fiber and contains 3% DV or more of Vitamin C, Vitamin B-6, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Potassium, Copper, and Manganese.

This recipe for Applesauce from the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning may be canned in a boiling water canner or a pressure canner. You can also tailor the recipe slightly, deciding how sweet or tart you prefer your final product and also if you’d like its texture to be smooth or chunky.

An average of 21 pounds of apples is needed for a canner load of 7 quarts. If you are using pint jars, then about 13½ pounds are needed for a canner load of 9 pints. Select apples that are juicy and crispy. For a sweeter sauce, select apples that are sweet. For more tartness, combine 1 to 2 pounds of tart apples to each 3 pounds of sweeter fruit.

Apple slices in ascorbic acidWash, peel, and core apples. To prevent browning, you have the option to slice apples into water containing ascorbic acid. Use these guidelines for retaining optimum color and flavor to ensure that you use the proper proportion of ascorbic acid. After slicing, place apples slices into an 8- to 10- quart pot, draining the slices first if you used an ascorbic acid solution. Add ½ cup water. Heat quickly, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching, and cook until tender (5 to 20 minutes, depending on maturity and variety).

For a smoother texture, press through a sieve or food mill. For a chunk-style sauce, skip this step.

food millYour sauce may now be packed. If you’d rather sweeten it, then add 1/8 cup sugar per quart of sauce. Taste and add more, as you please. If sugar is added, reheat sauce to boiling then pack into jars. Remove air bubbles and leave ½-inch headspace (empty space between the top of the applesauce and the lid). Wipe jar rims and process according to the process times on the Tables below (adapted from the “Complete Guide to Home Canning,” Agriculture Information Bulletin No. 539, USDA, revised 2009).

Table 1. Recommended process time for Applesauce in a boiling-water canner.
Process Time at Altitudes of
Style of Pack Quart Size 0 – 1,000 ft 1,001 – 3,000 ft 3,001 – 6,000 ft Above 6,000 ft
Hot Pints 15 min 20 20 25
Quarts 20 25 30 35
Table 2.Process Times for Applesauce in a Dial-Gauge Pressure Canner.
Canner Pressure (PSI) at Altitudes of
Style of Pack Jar Size Process Time (Min) 0 – 2,000 ft 2,001 – 4,000 ft 4,001 – 6,000 ft 6,001 – 8,000 ft
Hot Pints 8 6 lb 7 lb 8 lb 9 lb
Quarts 10 6 7 8 9
Table 3. Process Times for Applesauce in a Weighted-Gauge Pressure Canner.
Canner Pressure (PSI) at Altitudes of
Style of Pack Jar Size Process Time (Min) 0 – 1,000 ft Above 1,000 ft
Hot Pints 8 5 lb 10 lb
Quarts 10 5 10

Apples are Peaking! Choose the Best Preservation Method

Did you know that once an apple tree begins to bear fruit, it will do so for a century? Today, there are over 2,500 varieties of apples grown in the United States. Fall weather brings the best fresh apples in bushels.

While we are in a season of peak apple production in many states, you might consider preserving some specialties that will add variety to menus throughout the year.  Apples can be dried, made into applesauce or apple butter, or even made into a delicious apple pear jam. Apples do not make the highest quality canned or frozen slices, but they can be preserved by those methods, also.

Whether you are buying apples by visiting the nearby orchard, the grocery store or market, or even picking apples from your own backyard, choose the preservation method that is best for your apple variety. Varieties that are good for freezing include: Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty, Stayman, Jonathan and Granny Smith. Varieties that are good for making applesauce and apple butter include: Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty, Stayman, Jonathan, Gravenstein and McIntosh. Red Delicious apples are best eaten fresh. They do not freeze or cook well.

When selecting your apples, remember that their flavor is best when they are at the peak of maturity.

Here are some options to prepare for and choose from in preserving your apples:

Making and canning a flavorful applesauce: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_02/applesauce.html

Making and canning a tasty, robust apple butter: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_02/apple_butter.html

For those who want a no-sugar added apple butter: (ours was developed  for sucralose as a sweetener) http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_02/apple_butter_reduced.html

Drying apple slices or rings: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/publications/uga/uga_dry_fruit.pdf

Combining the best of fall fruits in tasty pear-apple jam: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_07/pear_apple_jam.html

Making old-fashioned, pretty crabapple jelly: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_07/crabapple_jelly.html

Canning fun, cinnamon-flavored spiced apple rings: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_02/apple_rings_spiced.html

Canning a special, spicy gift quality apple chutney: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/can_06/apple_chutney.html

And, for all those extra apple slices to save for pies and desserts later in the year, freezing: http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/how/freeze/apple.html

Additional ideas and preservation methods are available from the National Center for Home Food Preservation at the University of Georgia, www.homefoodpreservation.com.


For original article, go to the National Center for Home Food Preservation website.