Even the Dread Pirate Roberts fears the Crimp-Eye Pirate Apple Butter!
- 8 lbs. apples
- 2 cups cider
- 2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 2−1÷4 cups white sugar
- 2−1÷4 cups packed brown sugar
- 2 tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tbsp. ground cloves
- 1 tbsp. ground allspice
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
Wash apples, remove stems, peel, core and quarter them (I prefer using my handy-dandy crank-powered apple peeler!).
Cook slowly in cider and vinegar until soft.
Using a stick blender, purée to the consistency you prefer. I aim for it being a bit thicker than applesauce, but without any big chunks.
It can be a little tricky to get the consistency you like; if you purée to the right consistency but then add the sugars and spices and boil it down, it can end up a lot runnier than you’d like. I prefer puréeing it just enough to let it be stirred and boiled, then purée it a bit more at the end. After that you can boil it a few more minutes, then finish up.
Add white and brown sugar and bring to a gentle boil, stirring frequently. Add the spices and balsamic vinegar toward the end and stir just enough to combine.
To test for doneness, remove a spoonful and hold it away from the steam for 2 minutes. It is done if the butter remains mounded on the spoon.
Another way to determine when the butter is cooked adequately is to spoon a small quantity onto a plate. When a rim of liquid does not separate around the edge of the butter, it’s.
If You’re Gonna Can It:
Ladle hot apple butter into hot, sterile jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims of jars with a dampened clean paper towel. Screw on lids finger-tight and process, adjusting for altitude if needed (see chart below).
Check the seal on the lids after 24 hours; refrigerate any jars that didn’t seal properly.
|Processing time at altitude of:|
|Jar Size||0 — 1,000 feet||1,000 — 6,000 feet||Above 6,000 feet|
|Pint or half-pint||5 minutes||10 minutes||15 minutes|
|Quart||10 minutes||15 minutes||20 minutes|