I have a tendency to impulse buy. I used to impulse buy clothes, make-up, shoes- you know, the things most people buy when they're feeling sad or bored or happy. Slowly over the years, however, I've stopped buying these sorts of things. Pretty clothes and fancy shoes have been replaced by food. I'm serious. I am that person that looks forward to grocery shopping. Thankfully, Octavian is a great shopping buddy and loves our trips to Trader Joe's or Costco (for the samples) and Railey's or Safeway (the free ba-boons).
As a family of three we spend quite a lot of money on groceries each month. I tell myself that it's because we rarely eat out, but it's also my stockpiling addiction. If I find something I like, I buy 10 bags. For example, Trader Joe's came out with copycat Milano cookies about 6 months ago. Who cares if I didn't like them, I bought 4 bags right away. They were such a hit that I was back a week later (even though we still had at least two bags left) and bought 5 more bags. This continued until the husband asked that I please stop buying cookies, or that if I do, buy something different. In general, my stockpiling and impulse buying is worse when I don't have a meal plan in mind. It's also worse when I cook less. For example, when I buy all my sweets premade and rotate the same 5 recipes over and over for dinner each week.
So, you may be wondering how this story ends in applesauce. I blame it on Octavian...
I was cutting up our last apple one afternoon about a month ago when Octavian, for the first time ever, demanded that he have a slice. Usually he doesn't like apple slices, but this time I removed the skin and before I knew it my snack had disappeared. The next day we found ourselves at Trader Joe's and I thought, Ah ha! He ate the apple yesterday. Now he'll want them all the time!
So I bought an entire bag of Pink Lady apples (my favorite). Did he eat another apple? No.
Weeks passed and I noticed it was time to do something with the apples, and fast. One rule in our house is no wasting food. I thought about it and figured what better way to use up a bag of apples than a pot of fresh homemade applesauce? Actually, I had no idea. This was my first time. But, now that I've done it, I'm not sure if I'll ever choose jarred applesauce again. You guys, it was amazing. Best impulse buy I've made in a long time. And a big thank you to the kid for not eating them.
Homemade Cinnamon Applesauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes / Cook Time: 30 minutes / Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: Approximately 1.5 quarts
As I mentioned, I used Pink Lady apples for this recipe because that is what I had laying around. Other recommended apples are Granny Smith, Mcintosh, Fuji, Gravenstein, Jonagold, and Golden Delicious. Or, even better, you can always mix and match!
3 pounds of apples (approx. 6 medium apples), peeled, cored, quartered and chopped into smaller chunks.
1 cup water
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
You can adjust sugar amount according to personal preference. As I don't usually love lots of added sugar (unless we're talking cookies or cake), I will probably cut the sugar in half next time I make this recipe. Of course, Pink Lady apples are known for being sweet, so perhaps my opinion will change with a different apple.
- Place the peeled, cored, quartered and chopped apples in a large pot. Add the water, sugar, ground cinnamon and salt and stir. Bring to a boil on high heat, then turn to low and cover. Maintain a low simmer for 30 minutes or until the apples are completely soft and cooked through.
- Once fully cooked, remove from heat. For a chunky applesauce, mash the apples in the pot with a potato masher. For a smooth applesauce, add to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth (if using a blender, work in batches and allow time to cool).
- Delicious served warm or cold.