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Big Black Dog: Apple Maple Butter

September 24, 2009

Apple Maple Butter


The first time I made Apple Maple Butter I could not believe such a gorgeous taste developed from such a simple, no thrills recipe. I now make it several times a year and it's always a welcome addition to our table! I especially like to make my Apple Butter when we're having a winter snow storm and the wonderful smell of apple, cinnamon and maple just fill up the entire house. It just makes me feel so warm when the house smells so good.

I do have to confess that the reason I make butters is because I can not make jelly. For the life of me I can not hit the jell point no matter what thermometer I use and I've tried and tried and tried. But failure leads to other things and in this case my discovery of butters! I dearly love making butters because you can adjust the sugar content and since we'd rather taste the natural flavors rather then sugar, butters work out very well for us. So when making my butters, apple, peach, rose hip, plum or pear I do cut the sugar in half and it's perfectly delicious.

When making my Apple Maple Butter I use at least 3-4 different varieties of apples: Granny Smith, Gala, Pink Lady, Honey Crisp, Macintosh, Fuji, Rome, Cortland or Jonathon but any good cooking apple is just fine. However, I think the addition of Honey Crisp and Cortland made my best batch ever, but these varieties are not easy to find!

And I never peel my apples, yes even for apple pie I use the peel. So much wasted time in peeling each apple and it's so unnecessary. I would never eliminate flavor from a recipe and the apple peel contains so much good flavor, why waste it? So I just take the whole apple and slice off pieces down to the core, chop up to about 1/2" pieces. So simple and no wasting time peeling or coring apples.

To make this recipe even more time saving, I use my crock pot ie: slow cooker. I just dump everything in the slow cooker for about 4-5 hours, on high for the first hour and then I turn it down to low, and let it cook down until it's very thick and then can it up. However, you do not need to use a slow cooker, you can make the Apple Maple Butter on the stove in a heavy-bottomed pan with exactly the same results. However, if using the stove top you will need to stir it often to avoid scorching.




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Apple Maple Butter
Recipe adapted from my friend Nancy

12 cups finely chopped apples (about 6 lbs)
6 cups sugar (I use abt 3 c sugar)
1 cup maple syrup (Grade "B" if possible but I usually use Log Cabin Syrup)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice (I use 1/4 tsp allspice)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (I use 1/4 tsp nutmeg)
1/4 teaspoon cloves (I skip)

1. Combine all ingredients in a large deep pan or slow cooker. (See Note if using a slow cooker.) Slowly bring to a boil. Cook until very thick. Stir frequently, so it doesn't stick.

I like my apple butter with small pieces of apple still intact but if you'd like a consistent spread you can use an immersion stick blender or food processor to blend thoroughly. If the butter has cooled, make sure to bring it to a slow boil for 15 minutes before canning.

REMEMBER this is a butter not jelly. So the consistency should be like a VERY thick apple sauce. If you take a spoonful the butter should stay mounded and not flatten out at all. If the butter does not mound it is not thick enough and needs to be simmered for another hour or so.

2. Sterilize 5 pint jars, then place upside down in a 325 F oven for about 15 minutes. Boil 2-piece lids for 20 minutes and then leave submerged in hot water until you need them.

3. Ladle hot apple butter into hot jars to within 1/4 inch of top for head space.

4. Remove air bubbles by sliding a rubber spatula between the glass and butter.

5. Re-adjust the head space to 1/4 inch.

6. Wipe jar rim to remove any stickiness.

7. Center lid on top of jar; apply screw band just until finger tight.

8. Place jars in a hot bath in a canner and process for 10 minutes. Make sure that the jars are completely submerged in water with at least 1" of water above the jar tops.

9. Remove jars and place on a towel.

10. Jars are sealed when the lids pop and are curved down, (concave).

11. Label jars and store in a cool, dark place.

NOTE: If using a slow cooker put all ingredients in the slow cooker. Turn on high until the butter starts to boil and then turn down to low. Stir occasionally.




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The End
(But I have 5 more pints!)



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Foodie Friday is graciously hosted by Michael of Designs by Gollum. Please visit Designs by Gollum and see more wonderful creations!






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38 Comments:

Blogger Manuela said...

Oh my... I wish I could have eaten this for breakfast! The spreads you have on your english muffins are yummy! What a lucky family you have. ;)

September 24, 2009 at 6:22 AM  
Blogger Lori E said...

I will be making a trip to an apple orchard soon. This is definitely in my future.

September 24, 2009 at 6:42 AM  
Blogger Megan said...

This looks wonderful and would be perfect for Christmas baskets. I love that it's made in a crockpot. I just made a microwave jam that I loved because it was so simple but I must try the crockpot butter.

September 24, 2009 at 7:26 AM  
Blogger Kat said...

I never thought of using a crockpot for that purpose. Great idea! I would like to see a photo of your full jars. I love to look at full jars.

September 24, 2009 at 7:56 AM  
Blogger Kat said...

I never thought of using a crockpot for that!! Ingenious! I would like to see a photo of your full jars of Apple Maple Butter! I love looking at full jars!

September 24, 2009 at 8:13 AM  
Anonymous Elle said...

Thank you, thank you! I'm going to make this very soon. Gave away my slow cooker, but happy to hear it works well on the stove top, too. And I know just where to get my corts and honey crisps! :)

September 24, 2009 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger Tracy @ Sugarcrafter said...

Yeah, I'm going to have to make this tonight. I can't wait!!

September 24, 2009 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger Chow and Chatter said...

wow love this so American and good

September 24, 2009 at 12:13 PM  
Blogger My Carolina Kitchen said...

My husband just loves apple butter. Wait until he sees this.
Sam

September 24, 2009 at 1:02 PM  
Blogger Danielle said...

YEAH the Apple Maple Butter recipe! I'd love to make this. Apple Butter is one of my favorites. But I don't have a canner...is there something I can use / do instead?

September 24, 2009 at 2:34 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

Danielle,

BWB=Boil Water Bath

BWB can be done in any pan. Generally I use pint jars and use my 8-qt soup pot for the BWB.

As long as you can submerge the jars in water and have at least 1" of water over the jar tops you will be just fine.

If you don't have a large soup pot, just can in 1/2 pint jar which are much smaller. You should not have any problem having a pot large enough for 1/2 pint jars.

September 24, 2009 at 2:48 PM  
Blogger Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

I am so glad I read this post! I don't peel either, and I love the crock pot idea. I use mine for yogurt and cheese making because I hate to babysit the stove.
We are hitting the orchard soon, I will just keep an eye out for low or no sugar apple butter and use your techniques.
ps - what goes wrong with jelly? I have only made it the once, with the packet of squishy pectin.

September 24, 2009 at 4:11 PM  
Blogger Michael Lee West said...

This is the perfect recipe to make on an autumn day. The wonderful aromas that wind through the house while this cooks is just a bonus--that's my favorite kind of recipe. I love how you use a variety of apples. Can't wait to make this! I'll let you know how it turns out.

September 24, 2009 at 6:06 PM  
Anonymous Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

Looks yummilicious!!

September 24, 2009 at 6:06 PM  
Blogger susan said...

This is perfect!! I bet the peels make it much better--a lot of flavor is in the peel! What great gifts if you can bear to give it away!

September 24, 2009 at 6:22 PM  
Blogger Red said...

YUMMM I love fall and fall recipies!

September 24, 2009 at 6:38 PM  
Blogger Elaine said...

I've never tried putting maple in the apple butter....I love the idea! I'll definitely try this soon as we are heading off to the apple orchard next weekend!
Elaine :)

September 24, 2009 at 7:08 PM  
Blogger heartnsoulcooking said...

I love apple butter, never have try it with a maple flavor. THANKS!!! Geri

September 24, 2009 at 7:20 PM  
Blogger SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

This sounds so good! I haven't had apple butter in ages. I like the idea of using less sugar too!

~Susan

September 24, 2009 at 8:33 PM  
Blogger Shirley said...

Sounds wonderful. Can you freeze instead of can??

September 24, 2009 at 10:41 PM  
Blogger Poppedijne said...

This looks absolutely delish. Sadly we have no apples at all this year.Last year we had truckloads full of Jonathans( we have one big tree in the garden) and this year we have hardly 4 pounds of apples from the same tree.So I will have to try this recepie next year!

September 25, 2009 at 2:26 AM  
Blogger Robin Sue said...

Aha! I have a big bag of apples waiting for me to make apple sauce. It has been years since I have made apple butter and if I have any apples left I just may make some apple butter too!

September 25, 2009 at 5:10 AM  
Blogger Nancy @ La Chambre Rose said...

The perfect Vermont recipe!

September 25, 2009 at 8:08 AM  
Blogger Ashley @ AshleysBusy said...

Oh that looks yummy. I just bought a delicious allpe butter from a lady at the farmers market. Maybe when I run out, I'll make some myself. Thanks!

September 25, 2009 at 8:25 AM  
Blogger Catherine said...

This sounds so good! I want this so bad...will definately be making this soon! Happy Blogging!

September 25, 2009 at 9:04 AM  
Blogger food with style said...

beautiful pics, it looks delish~

September 25, 2009 at 9:19 AM  
Blogger Mary said...

This sounds so good. Your words are as convincing as your pictures. I love apple butter and make it every year. I've never tried using maple syrup. I can't wait to give it a try.

September 25, 2009 at 9:19 AM  
Blogger honeysuckle said...

This sounds so good and perfect for next week when we are supposed to have cold weather. I like the idea of using the crock pot so you can forget it for a few hours. Thanks I would like to try this.

September 25, 2009 at 10:36 AM  
Blogger honeysuckle said...

This sounds so good and perfect for next week when our weather is supposed to turn cold. I love that it an be made i the crock pot and forgotten for a few hours.Thanks for the recipe.

September 25, 2009 at 10:38 AM  
Blogger Mrs. P. said...

Oh, that looks so good!! My dear mother always used applebutter in place of applesauce in her Applesauce Spice Cake. So rich and wonderful!! Thanks for sharing!

September 25, 2009 at 2:23 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

Shirley,

I'm hesitant to say yes to freezing Apple Butter. I had another person ask me about freezing and last night I tried to find some information on any County Extension site recommending freezing apple butter and I could find nothing.

However I found tons of recipes on the internet for freezing apple butter but that does not mean it's safe. I usually go with whatever the County Extension Offices recommend and so far no information on freezing apple butter as far I could find.

Sorry I could not be of more help.

But it's not a big recipe and only cans about 5 pints. It's so good a pint does not last long. But you could half the recipe and refrigerate.

September 25, 2009 at 4:50 PM  
Blogger Lori Lynn said...

When I lived in Chicago we would go apple picking in the fall...

Your butter sounds so nostalgic to me.

September 25, 2009 at 6:27 PM  
Blogger Kate said...

This does look tasty. I am on my way to get apples tomorrow...a nice day trip...I will be making this. Thanks for sharing!

September 25, 2009 at 7:49 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

I love you. I really do. I'm soooo canning this, this weekend.

September 25, 2009 at 8:02 PM  
Blogger ~ ~ Ahrisha ~ ~ said...

This one is a keeper, I'm making it tomorrow. The apples in the big bowl were for sauce but hay, this is close enough and I'll bet much tastier.
~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

September 25, 2009 at 8:19 PM  
Blogger SnoWhite said...

What a great and yummy breakfast!

September 26, 2009 at 1:59 PM  
Blogger Brian, the old man said...

I love apple butter. I have never tried making it myself but it seems easy enough. I can almost taste it. mmm

September 26, 2009 at 2:11 PM  
Anonymous Kayte said...

Love the butters, too. Grew up with them as for some reason my family just preferred those so lots of canning of butters. It was fun to read your post. Beautiful photos, as always.

September 26, 2009 at 3:20 PM  

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