Applebutter makes me think of my nana (rest her soul) Ramona and her best friend Irma. If you're picturing two grandmas who are adorable because they're name Ramona and Irma making applebutter, you've got a great visual of these two.
Irma lived in Southern California, and she would travel up to Washington every few years for a long visit. They would chat, cook, and can. And the rest of us would reap the benefits. Applebutter on toast, sandwiches, ice cream, and yogurt is delicious and comforting.
Flash forward to present day. I still love applebutter, but I don't have days at a time to spend cooking and canning. So, per my usual route, I've redone a classic that looks/tastes like it took forever, but it is for the lazy. Oh, and I made it a healthier. I mean, a WHOLE lot healthier.
If you've ever seen an applebutter recipe, you'll notice that they call for about 5 billion cups of sugar. Have you ever had an apple before? Kinda sweet, eh? Why the need to add tons of sugar?
Sarah's Crockpot Applebutter that tastes like your Nana's, but didn't require retirement to make
A bunch (5-10+) of apples of your choice. I like an assortment/whatever is on sale
Honey (or sweetener of your choice)
Apologies in advance for the craptastic photos in this post.
Peel, core, and chop the apples of your choice. Put them in the crockpot and sprinkle with copious amounts of cinnamon and a light sprinkle of both nutmeg and cloves. Just when you think "that is probably enough cinnamon", I like to add about one more tablespoon.
I always do a drizzle of honey on top as well - maybe two tablespoons? Cook on low for at least five hours.
After five hours, give them a stir. If the apples are soft and mushy, they're ready to go.
I use my immersion blender in the crockpot to blend the apples until smooth.
If you don't want to can these, make sure they're in freezer-proof containers. When apple butter thaws, you can never tell visually or by taste that it has been previously frozen. These would make some tasty holiday gifts, and "hands on" time is about 15 minutes
Labels: Crockpot cookin', Homemade holidays, Homemade seasonings/Condiments