Did you know you can make applesauce without cooking the apples? Cooked applesauce is actually pretty easy, and I’ve done it plenty of times either on the stovetop or in the microwave, but this was a revelation!
I don’t remember where I found it – perhaps while looking for a recipe for apple chips, which I have yet to try – but I immediately knew I had to try it. Just cut your apples (you could use an apple corer, but I just cut around all four sides), put ’em in a food processor, and process till smooth. You could add a splash of lemon juice to keep the apples from browning, some cinnamon, even some honey or other sweetener – but I find the fresh apples sweet enough already.
Don’t even bother peeling your apples! The skin contains fiber, antioxidants and all sorts of good stuff, but you may want to get the organic apples since the peel retains pesticides from the growing process. I find it most cost-effective to get bagged apples, and the organic brand is only a dollar more. Not only is the apple peel nutritious, but it makes the applesauce look pretty and rosy with flecks of red (if you use red apples, like I did!).
I first started making my own applesauce when making homemade baby food, but it has since become a staple in our home. We like our applesauce plain, with walnuts on top, as a substitute for some of the oil in baking, and in oatmeal – one of my newfound favorites. I’m curious to try adding other fruits for flavored applesauce, but still want to keep it raw. I bet blueberries and strawberries would blend well, and peaches if they’re fresh enough. How do you do applesauce?