Saturday, November 9, 2013

It's Autumn and You Know What That Means....

Except not here, at least, not today. Though I do have a wicked yummy looking recipe I've been dying to try for pumpkin granola which is nut free (Geeky Dude is quite allergic to all tree nuts, which means no store-bought granola, so I am often tinkering around with new granola recipes. This makes him exceptionally happy).

About a month ago, the Geeky Dude a group of friends and I went on an apple picking adventure at a nearby orchard. I was recently off of crutches from a dancing accident at a friend's wedding (yes, seriously) and ended up stuck in a tree, because...well, all the best apples are obviously at the top of the tree. That is however not the moral of my story. The awesome part of my story is that AFTER getting down (I took photos of myself stuck in said tree and texted them as an SOS to Geeky Dude who was elsewhere picking apples in the orchard) Geeky Dude and I left the orchard with a plethora of apples.

Everyone else in our group picked about a peck of apples (about 5 lbs of apples, give or take). Geek Dude and I however, picked a bushel and a peck (Has anyone ever heard the song a Bushel and a Peck? It's pretty much awesome and my mom and grandfather always sang it to me as a kid) which is about 25-30 lbs of apples.   We're overachievers, what can I say.

That, and we really enjoy making apple flavored things. I'm a big fan of apple crisps because apple pie is far too much work (if you're going to make a pie, do it right, completely from scratch, right? I hate making crust, it's so fussy. Screw that. I'm making a damn crisp). 

Then there's applesauce. I LOVE making applesauce. It's something of a tradition from my childhood (much like the baked mac and cheese) that stems from my grandmother. Only this recipe of hers, I truly can't replicate because she didn't have one. It's something I've come to understand about cooking and baking. Real cooks and bakers don't measure. Not really. They just throw ingredients together until the texture looks right (baking) and then add things until the flavor is perfect (cooking and baking). There really is no measurement needed once you get the basics down. 

Yep, I've spilled the beans. You don't need a recipe. You only need a guideline. Experiment, make mistakes, run wild and crazy in your kitchen!  It's how all the really good recipes are made!  Having a good base recipe doesn't hurt, however. Here is mine. 

I started with Sarah's Applesauce Recipe from and made some changes. Please see the link for the original recipe. 

16 apples - peeled, cored and chopped
1 cup water
1/3 cup white sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground clove
1.In a saucepan, combine apples, water, sugar, and cinnamon. Cover, and cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until apples are soft. Allow to cool, then mash with a fork or potato masher.

****If you would prefer your applesauce to be less chunky, run it through the food processor***

********Basically my changes were to cut the water WAY down, cut the sugar and use some brown sugar and also add in some additional spices as well as increase the amount of cinnamon. I also increased the serving size from 4 servings to 16 because 4 apples does not make much applesauce.*******