Christmas is a wonderful season full of family and friends, love and laughter. A time for Holiday parties and showing those around you that you care. It’s also a time of gift giving, which can be time consuming, frustrating, and expensive as much as it can be rewarding. Outside of family, it can be hard to know to whom a gift should be given, or deal with the feeling of guilt when an unrequited gift is presented.
I’m all about efficiency, and I’m also about love and appreciation, so over the past 2 years apple butter has evolved as my go-to gift. It’s delicious and homemade, it’s classy and crafty. It’s virtually free of all allergies. Once canned properly, it can be stored for long periods of time, allowing you do do some serious planning ahead. And at $2-3 a person, it’s the perfect gift!
The recipe is simple enough, but there are a few important things to note. First, every crockpot is different. You might need to add a couple hours to covered cooking time, or several to uncovered cooking time to evaporate the juices. Second, the canning process is very important. Make absolutely sure your cans are sealed before you are done. There should be no pop in the top.
Don’t forget to keep a little extra for yourself. Delicious on a piece of toast or a pumpkin muffin!
Chai-Spiced Apple ButterPrint Recipe
- 16 lbs Granny Smith and Braeburn mixed
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tbsp garam masala
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 14 4-oz jars
- 1 5-Quart Crockpot
Peel and core the apples. Slice into 6 - 8 slices, and then halve the slices. Add to the crockpot along with the sugar and spices.
Set crockpot on high and cook, covered for 2 hours. Stir every 1/2 hour.
Lower heat to low. Cook on low, covered for about 12 hours, stirring occasionally.
Your apples should be broken down, but there will be a lot of juices. Turn crock up to high and cook, uncovered, for up to 7 hours, stirring occasionally, until most juices have evaporated. Allow butter to cool.
Separate butter into cans. Screw the top on tight. Heat a large soup pot filled about 2/3 of the way with water to boiling. Use a kitchen towel to secure the cans in the pot by wrapping it around the cans. Immerse the towel and cans into the water for about 10 - 15 minutes each. As you remove the cans from the water, wait a couple minutes and then test the top. If the lid pops, it is not sealed. Place back in the pot for an additional 10 minutes.
Once all the cans are sealed, decorate and label them as you wish. Happy Holidays!
Cans can be stored for 8 months to 1 year.