An Apple a day..

Even if you missed looking for those stunning white to white-pink flowers in your spring walks and travels, when if you wanted to wild harvest fruit, you should in fact have a local map marked with lots and lots of little dots of where that fruit is, with different letters and a list of what the numbers mean and a general time of when they ripen on a normal year.

But even if you missed out on your spring head-start in your wild fruit hunting, there is at least one fruit that just screams out to be picked, and that would be apples, not crabs, they can be crafty little things hiding if they want to but most apples turn red and say.. pick me, Pick me and help me spread my apple seeds far and wide

This is what happened yesterday, DH was driving and wanted to try and new road, and there in a field edge was apple tree’s covered in perfectly ready apples a bit bigger then the typical mac, and after checking with the closest farm, if they picked and or would mind if we did, (they don’t and we were welcome to do so, take them all, they produce heavy each year), we picked all within reach and when we came home, we had 54.6 pds worth of apples to put into the canning cycle. The average bushel of apples is 42 pds so about a bushel and quarter for 20 min worth of wild picking..

Now, I had made all the apple jelly from my last picking batch so this time, I wanted to make lots of apple sauce, the key to making huge batches of apple sauce is this hand cranked machine.. it cuts the work time in half.. the second key is to have two stoves running at the same time if you can manage it.. sorry for the wierd coloring, its a very overcast day that smell’s like storm coming, and the lights are messing with the color of the photos.

Simmer your apples till they are soft, about 20 to 25 min normally, and then you put the hot apples and water in the top, the pulp and juice goes into one bowl, all the skins, seeds and stems go into the other, this wonderful thing works for apple sauce, tomato sauce, has four different sizes to range from Grape juice, to salsa making.. is worth its value many times over!

At this point, you measure out your apple sauce, add your desired amount of sugar within the safe choices allowed and on how sweet you like it, add your lemon juice and any spices you want to add, bring it back up to a boil and jar and water bath for 20 min for pints and 30 min for quarts for my 1000 feet or under rating.. check your canning books to see if you need to adjust for where you live.

Frugal tip: do you or your children like those Mott’s mixed apple fruit cups that cost so much and give total of eight half cup measurements?  Reduce the costs, reduce the packaging but keep the wild flavors.. Make lots and lots of homemade wild foraged apple or crab/apple basic sauces, and then measure out your half cup of sauce and add one tsp of any kind of fruit jam or jelly and mix them together.. suddenly the choices are endless, try peach-apple sauce or blue-berry apple sauce  or cherry-apple sauce.. you get the idea.. Its a way to chance up the apple sauce and way to stre-t-ch the higher priced fruits with a very low cost one!

Well, this batch’s final count is in, 54 pds of apple, 40 Quarts of Apple Sauce…

This post is part of the Homestead Barn Hop, Click on the link and check out what everyone else has been doing in the past week..

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25 Responses to An Apple a day..

  1. We have applesauce from some early harvest apples I picked up last month. Since Explosion is going to school this year, I should probably make up a bunch of sauce in 1/2 pint jars for lunch bags. I definitely wouldn’t buy the individual tubs.

    • Is Explosion excited about starting school? I have little steel bowls for hubby to take as I don’t like sending my glass jars with him to work. I used to buy them when I lived up north, I like that 1/2 was the perfect measurement for use in baking, but also bought the big jars as well.

  2. I just purchased a food mill this year to help with our overzealous tomatoes for spaghetti sauce and have been tempted to try applesauce. I think your post just convinced me!

  3. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    OMG, what a wonderful machine! Where did you get it?
    I think there’s one of that same apple growing up the sideroad from the farm. Taste great, don’t they?

    • Hi Deb

      I got it at home hardware, I used to use a regular food mill and I was picking apples a couple years ago and said boy its sure is a lot of work doing it by hand and a local lady said, don’t you have one of these? So I went and checked it out, I have used it ever since, I should consider picking up a second one for storage, because I would hate to be without it if I was working in large amounts, I love that its hand crank, uses for energy costs other then arm muscle. The apples were tart, but o so much flavor!

      • Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

        Thanks for the tip! Always cored the fruit, leaving skin intact and using red-skinned apples ’cause I love the pink colour you get. Even so, this’ll save a lot of time – plus no waste!!

        Just called my local Home Hardware to put one on hold. Apparently the extra screens don’t come with the food strainer ($84.99) any more so I ordered a Salsa ($20.99) and Grape ($13.99) screen.
        Yahoo! No more chopping ’till my fingers go numb!!

        So I’m guessing you’re using the basic screen for the applesauce, right? Does this thing come with a recipe/instruction manual, I hope?

      • That’s great Deb, sounds like the right price, I think I paid about 5 dollars less but that was a couple years ago, my fault, it only came with the apple sauce or tomato sauce one, I got the other ones as a package deal online, had forgot that till you said something.

        Really makes a huge difference in so much less waste and it helps alot in a number of different ways, yes, it came with instructions or it did back then.

      • Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

        Was your “package deal” a great deal? Like, maybe should I cancel and get the same package as you did? You wouldn’t happen to remember where/who online, would you? *She said hopefully?*

      • Sorry Deb, I have checked on amazon, and I can’t seem to remember where I got them, or even what I paid for it, I just remember that I was able to get it as a set of the extra’s for a just better price then ordering them in from home hardware even with shipping.

        Wish I could be more help on that one.. on the other hand, my mom said she just went down and picked one up for herself to make apple sauce with, so hope you both will report back on if you like it and found it easy to use, I always have, I’m not saying that there is not work but its alot less.

  4. queenofstring says:

    I am off apple gleaning tomorrow and will get a share of what’s gleaned so will be doing something similar, without the aid of your fancy machine! On a similar note, I have been making fruit syrups to dilute to refreshing drinks and discovered that they make very refreshing popsicles, similar to the fruit juice iceys that motts and welchs having been doing of late. The favourite so far is rubarb.

  5. Andrea says:

    Unfortunately we’re having a pretty sad apple harvest in our area, courtesy of harsh summers and winters, lack of rain, extreme wind. We did find some delicious Paula Reds and put up some sauce a few weeks ago.

    My kids love the fruity flavored applesauce, so I may try that and pack it for lunches this year!

  6. ma says:

    Those are beautiful looking apples and I am looking forward to tasting all of your preserves when I arrive for my visit in September, especially my favourite grape jam. I will appreciate the hard work that you and DH have been doing with all of the picking and preserving.

    • Dh’s Ma, you are so funny, No, I will not feed you when you come out, No you can not walk down the stair and into the cellar and pick what you want, Kidding.. you are welcome to try whatever you want, and someone has a big jar of homemade Grape Jelly with her name on it, and maybe a couple tucked away for a xmas stocking gift or two..

  7. Pingback: Making Homemade Grape Juice | Just another Day on the Farm

  8. Natalia says:

    Thank you for pointing me here, farmgal. I had done a search on your blog for “strainer” but this didn’t come up because you didn’t call the machine anything! lol. It’s wonderful to see how you use it and how well it works. Thank you again!

  9. Diane Jauert says:

    I am very interested in the hand powered machine that makes applesauce and grape juice and would really like to find one. What is it called? My hardware store does not carry it so would like to be able to tell them what it is for them to order it for me. Thanks a lot!!

  10. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    Thanks for REposting this one V!!
    Okay, so I just went to the eBay link – it still works, but they’ve only got FIVE left in stock – and then I searched for the additional set of three screens that you had referred to and they have them as well!: )
    http://m.ebay.ca/itm/VICTORIO-STRAINER-200-WITH-3-SCREENS-NEW-IN-BOX-/311440716311?nav=SEARCH
    By the way, this is a mobile link, so if you’re on desktop, just delete the m at the beginning and it should work (I hope; )
    The Home Hardware link still works too – although they still have a bunch of annoying pop-up crap [NOW I remember why I didn’t like using their website!]: And the description says the standard mill screen is good for apples, pumpkin and a bunch of other stuff; but it also mentions a separate number for a “pumpkin screen”(??)
    “Pumpkin screen available: HH #4418-482” which makes no sense, to me at least, as you’d think that pumpkin purée would be just as smooth as applesauce, wouldn’t you?
    Sorry, but their machine doesn’t appear to have the versatility like the Victoro on eBay,ca… }:
    Saying it one more time here: if you like pink applesauce, use RIPE red-skinned apples for your sauce: )
    Hey V, assuming you de-stem your tomatoes before milling them for sauce? Bernardin also suggests a small x be cut in the bottom to make it easier to peel if you’re canning whole (and it also stops tomatoes from blowing their skin while blanching; )

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