Apple and Peanut Butter

This is a great snack for kids and adults.

Wash and core apples and slice into nice thick slices (about 8-10 pieces). Peel or not.

Mix 2 tablespoons of smooth peanut butter with 1 teaspoon of local honey and stir well.

Dip & Eat

Add more honey if you want it sweeter. The honey makes the dipping easier.

Dried Apples

This is such a wonderful healthy snack for your and the kids. I have a small dehydrator I found a K-mart. If you have a large family there are commercial dehydrators available.

Use any apple in season. Wash, peel (or not), slice thin, about ¼ “thick. You don’t have to be exact.

Place slices on your dehydrator rack evenly and turn temp to the lowest setting. Depending on your unit and the thickness of your slices, it takes about 12-24 hour to dry. It also depends on whether you like your apples to be chewy or crisp.

Some folks dip the apples in lemon juice to prevent browning; some dip them in cinnamon & sugar. I do not add anything to my apples and they are great. My grandchildren prefer these to cookies.

Note: If you prefer chewy apples do not seal them in an air tight container after drying, as they could mold due to the moisture left in the fruit.

Apples and Pork Chops

I recently started using this recipe with my family and they loved it so much, I’ll never fry pork chops again.

Use thick cut chops and place them in a baking dish and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Smother the chops completely with applesauce that is heavily spiced with cinnamon (two cups sauce with 1 Tbl. Cinnamon).

Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake at 350 until the chops are tender. These chops are so moist and tender you can cut them with a fork.

The cinnamon flavor is a real treat!

Apple Pancakes

I always buy the premix pancake flour. There a lot of good brands to select from, but my favorite is New Hope Mills buttermilk mix. I prefer the buttermilk mix rather than the buckwheat mix as it is milder and brings out the apple flavor.

Start with 1 ½ cups mix, add a beaten egg and one cup chopped (very fine) apples. Be sure to peel and core the apple first – the skin tends to be tough. Add about ¾ cup milk depending on whether you like a thick or thin pancake. NEVER beat the batter. Stir gently until mixed. Bake on a hot griddle (turn pancake after bubbles on the top break). Do not press down on pancake as it cooks. Once you turn the pancake it only takes about a minute to cook the other side. For variations you can add ½ tsp. cinnamon to the apples.

Serve with real butter and maple syrup or honey. Apple Butter is also great on Pancakes.

Apple Butter

I make and sell a lot of this spicy apple butter, in the winter when things slow down on our farm. I have eight crock pots I use so I make some really large batches. Any apple will work for apple butter, but mostly I use Crispin (Mutsu), as it cooks down well and it’s not too watery. Peel, and slice the apples and fill the crock pots. I add about ½ to one cup of cider to each pot and cook on low heat. Once the apples have cooked down and look like apple sauce, you can turn the heat up to high and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. I add a package of pectin to each pot and cook until mixture is quite thick. To each pot I add about 4-5 cups of granulated sugar, 2 Tbl. cinnamon and 1 tsp. of cloves to each pot. (These are 6 quart pots). (You can add more or less sugar and spices to your own taste.) Continue cooking until mixture is very thick and will start to gel a bit. Ladle into ½ pint jars and process in a hot water bath for 10-15 minutes. This is a great product to use on toast, pancakes, crepes, crackers, etc.

Apple Jelly

I sell a lot of jelly on the farm. It’s great on English muffins and sandwiches with peanut butter. I follow the recipe on the sure-jell box for Apple jelly, except I use cider for the liquid. Reduce the sugar requirements by one cup and add one cup of cinnamon red hot candy. These candies give the jelly a great taste and a beautiful red color.

The only problem with this jelly is it will sometimes be a little runny and you may need to boil it longer than the recipe states.

I process all my jams and jellies in a hot water bath for added safety.

Spiced Apple Cider

Some folks call this “mulled” apple cider because it is spiced and served warm. This is a great beverage on those cold days.

I start out with 2 gallons of cider (this amount can be reduced to meet your needs) in a large coffee urn. Place about 2 Tbl. of whole allspice, a heaping tsp. of whole cloves and 3 large cinnamon sticks on a cheesecloth and tie securely. Place the tied bad into the urn of cold cider & heat.

Once the cider is hot you may want to remove the spices or leave in for a spicier flavor.

Some folks like to add a dash of nutmeg to the hot cider.