Ok, so this doesn’t have any veggies in the recipe, but I thought I would share anyways. I HATE store bought applesauce. I have ever since I was a kid. I have no idea what they do to the apples to make them so anemic that the applesauce looks white, but it just isn’t as flavorful as homemade applesauce and the sugar content is crazy. The way I make my applesauce, there is no added sugar, preservatives, or things you can not pronounce.
1. Get a bunch of different varieties of apples from a local orchard or the Farmer’s Market. This is key – the flavor is so much better when the varieties are mixed and you do not have to add any sugar because the apples are sweet enough. This year I used Cortland, Jona Gold, Crispin, Golden Delicious, and Empire.
2. Quarter, core, and peel the apples and fill a 6-quart slow cooker with the apple quarters. Pour some cider (the real stuff from the cider mill or farmer) into the slow cooker to add a little liquid. (I usually just eyeball it, but it is probably somewhere around 1/4 c. Make sure the bottom of the crock has a shallow layer of liquid on it.)
3. Cook on high for an hour.
4. Turn down to low and cook another 2-3 hours. The quarters will keep their shapes for the most part, so when you see that the bulk has diminished by about third, stir the apples and they should all mush up into sauce.
5. Add cinnamon to taste. Let cool. Pack it into freezer containers and freeze. From my latest batch we have 3 containers in the freezer, one in the fridge, and we already performed quality control on a few bowls.
*At this point, if you are really feeling industrious, you can use the peels and cores to make apple jelly. Or you can just put them in your compost pile.*