Prep 20 mins
Cook 8 hrs
·.·´¯'·.·"Buying bread from a man in Brussels. He was six foot four and full of muscles. I said, do you speak-a my language? He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich. And he said, I come from a land down under. Where beer does flow and men chunder. Can’t you hear, can’t you hear the thunder? You better run, you better take cover."·.·´¯'·.··.·´¯'·.· I have a few friends who live in Australia. One of them wrote me to inquire about apple butter. So I tried to answer her but realized I was having a really hard time putting it into words. So I hit Google and I couldn't find a thing about apple butter in Australia. I guess it's sort of like asking an American about Vegemite. Most of us have never had it or even heard of this beloved Australian staple. So here's my attempt at explaining what is apple butter. It's a spread bought by the jar and is generally used on breads. It's a very dark brown color, is the consistency of a thick puree, heavily spiced and once opened is stored in the refrigerator. If you can't find it in the store or you prefer to make your own, here's a recipe. I'm sure you could substitute honey for the sugar (although I don't know the ratio of honey to brown sugar) which would take it a step closer to "natural". In addition, you can use apple juice but please use pure juice, not the watered down, flavored variety. Natural apple cider is always preferred in making apple butter -- the kind that still has apple sediment in the bottom. Don't use "hard" cider -- unless you plan on pouring it in a glass and waking up two days later in Ohio wondering how you got there. Enjoy!
- 12 medium granny smith apples, peeled cored and cut into fourths (or use your favorite cooking apples)
- 1 1⁄2 cups packed dark brown sugar
- 1⁄2 cup natural apple cider
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cloves
- Mix all ingredients in 5-6 quart slow cooker.
- Cover and cook on low heat setting 8-10 hours or until apples are very tender.
- Mash apples with potato masher or large fork.
- Cook uncovered on low heat setting 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally until mixture is very thick.
- Cook about 2 hours.
- Spoon apple butter into container. Cover and store in refrigerator up to 3 weeks.