Thursday, October 29, 2015

Apple Pie Filling

 This summer season was incredible that I wish it would not go away.  But as soon as I see apples, pears, persimmons, and other fall fruits start to appear in the market, my heart rejoices for the endless possibility of savoring them.  First thing I did was making apple pie filling.  This type of filling is suitable for canning because I like the idea of having it ready when I feel like making apple pie.

Canning has become an enjoyable chore for me surprisingly.  It's true that I have to make a time to do canning but I found that I'm quite proud of what I make into those glass jars.  And I can because of necessity; I want to preserve the flavors of whatever's seasonal but I don't have an extra freezer to store them.

This filling uses ClearJel because it's recommended for canning pie filling.  I've made numerous pie fillings using CearJel before and am always satisfied at how easy it is to process them.  I made this fillings using Honeycrisp apples, courtesy of one of my good friends who has a tree in her backyard.  I'm blessed to have a friend who graciously gives!!

Apple Pie Filling

Makes about 7 pints jars

12 cups sliced peeled cored apples
2 3/4 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup ClearJel
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/4 cups cold water
2 1/2 cups unsweetened apple juice
1/2 cup lemon juice

Treat apple slices by submerging them into a mixture of 1/2 cup lemon juice and 8 cups water.  Leave in the lemon juice water until ready to use; drain completely.

Prepare canner, jars, and lids.  I usually wash jars and lids in dishwasher and then submerge them in the canner pots; fill it with enough water to cover them, then I let it boil for 1 minute.  Leave the jars and lids inside the pots until ready to be used.

In a large pot of boiling water, working with 6 cups at a time, blanch apple slices for 1 minute.  Remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm in a covered bowl.

In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine sugar, ClearJel, cinnamon, nutmeg, water, and apple juice.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, and cook until mixture thickens and begins to bubble.  Add lemon juice, return to a boil.  Drain apple slices and immediately fold into hot mixture.  Before processing, heat, stirring, until apples are heated through.

Ladle hot pie filling into hot jars, leaving 1 inch headspace.  Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace; if necessary, by adding hot filling.  Wipe rim.  Center lid on jar.  Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water.  Bring to a boil and process for 25 minutes.  Remove canner lid.  Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool, and store.

Source:  adapted heavily from Ball: Complete Book of Home Preserving

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