Well it is that time of year when the apples start to fall off the trees and the battle to pick up apples with the boys begin. But so far this year there hasn't been major battles and Gary helped this week by bring in a bucket of apples. These weren't real big apples so not really good for apple pie filling or apple dumplings, but good for applesauce. So if you have never made homemade apple sauce here is all that you do - it is really simple:
First wash your apples, then you can decide if you would like to peel your apples or put the apple sauce through a food mill. If you peel your apples, you just need to core and peel the apples and put them into a large pan and add a little bit of water so they don't scorch to the bottom of the pan. Turn the heat on and stir your pan of apples on a regular basis until it is sauce. You might need to add a little sugar depending on your preferred taste and depending on the apples. As for me I dislike peeling apples so I just cut and core the apples and cook the apples with the water until the peels start to let loose of the meat of the apple. I then put the apples through a food mill and take out all of the peels and then add sugar (Depending on the apples your applesauce might take on a pink color from the peels). Either way homemade applesauce with a little cinnamon is a favorite around my house especially if it is still just a little bit warm.
The best part was that I had 2 boys come offer to help today. Robert came in and started turning the food mill and when Garrett got up from his nap he wanted to help too. This was so neat since I try to find jobs for them to help with putting up food at this time of year and sometimes I have to listen to a lot of whining about helping. So their volunteering was a great joy!
If you are looking for ways to include the kids in the kitchen with canning or preserving foods this fall stop and look at the simple jobs that they can do. Even 2 year olds can stand on a chair and "help" wash the apples before cutting them into pieces. Older kids can learn knife safety and if they are soft apples use a butter knife to cut the apples into pieces. The food mill is another easy job but it takes supervision because usually the food being milled is hot and it could splash on the child. But even when we are trying to get the food ready for winter we need to find ways to include our kids in the kitchen.