Monday, May 23, 2011
Ok, this is more a post about why you need a food mill than how you make applesauce. Why you should be scoping every. single. thrift shop. for this very device. Because, once you have it - in all its 3-insert, stainless steel glory - you will use it all the time.
What's a food mill?
This is one. And this. But hey - you don't have to buy it from Amazon. Seriously, check your local thrift shop. (That's where I got mine ... )
And the very best thing about a food mill? No peeling. No mashing. No blending. You just cook whatever fruit or veggie you're using - in its skin/peel/whatever - then grind it through the food mill. Nutrients and all. Your item of choice is not chopped but simply pushed through the mill; the seeds and skins are left behind; and what you get is a smooth, divine puree. Oh yes. Scoop-on-your-fingers style.
But I did imply there would be applesauce ... right?
We're doing this without a recipe ... because really all you need for good applesauce is good organic apples, cinnamon, and maybe - depending on the type and ripeness of your apples - some brown sugar.
Applesauce for Lazy People
Step one. Wash your apples. Put them in a roasting pan and roast them in a hot oven till they're mushy on the inside. And maybe even exploding slightly.
Not pretty. I know.
Step two. Now put them through your food mill, a couple at a time. Set a bowl under the mill, unless you want to dress your countertop with apple puree. If you don't have a food mill, I'm really sorry ... you'll have to come up with a much less-lazy way of doing this. This recipe is purely for the lazy-at-heart (who also have a food mill).
Step three. Remove the food mill and at least rinse it before setting it in the sink. Let's keep the appearance of tidiness, people. Take your apple puree and add cinnamon and brown sugar (if needed) to taste.
Be careful if you let your daughter add the cinnamon.
Because dumping spices into a bowl is really, really fun.
Step four. Your applesauce is done, and you didn't even peel an apple. Ha! Don't you feel clever? Store it in the fridge for a week (or maybe two) ... but it's unlikely to last that long, because it's incredibly yummy. Use it in crumbles. Top with vanilla ice cream. Add to your morning muesli. Pack it in lunchboxes. You can even spread it on hot, buttered toast.
And if I haven't yet convinced you to find yourself a food mill ... here are some other things I've made:
garlic and chilli jam*
apple and tamarind chutney*
smoky eggplant puree
roasted tomato and red pepper sauce
pear and sweet potato soup
super-creamy mashed potatoes (ok, actually that was Robbie)
*recipes coming soon on these ones ... I promise ...
So ... I hope you're inspired. Get into your local Salvation Army. Get into your kitchen. Get your kids dumping cinnamon into stuff. Check out other thrifty finds.
And please say hello. I love hearing from you.