As soon as the leaves start to change and the mornings get chilly, I know it’s time to visit my grandma for our annual tradition, making homemade applesauce.
I have always loved visiting my grandma, Mimi. Every time you come over, she has some sort of treat waiting for you in a box on the kitchen counter, and makes the best peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or lunch. She has always been the type of grandma that will smack your hand away from tasting food off the stove, and throw flour at you while making Christmas cookies with her.
I grew up baking with her, and still come over to make treats for our family throughout the year. And while we no longer have tea parties together with my stuffed animals, as an adult, I get to have long conversations on our family history, and ask her about what she would cook with her own mother and grandmother.
So what do we make every fall?… Apple sauce! There is no true recipe that we follow for my favorite fall treat, but Mimi and I have perfected it over the years and I wanted to share it with you!
- 1 Bushel of Cortland Apples – Yes, that’s A LOT of apples! But, my grandma will typically make 4-5 pies out of this and use the remaining apples for sauce (which works out to about 90 apples for the sauce).
- Cinnamon & Sugar to taste
- 1 Lage Bowl
- Several Large Stove Pots
- 1 Foley Food Mill
Back in the day, my grandparents would travel up to Wisconsin to pick our apples from Kickapoo Orchard in Wisconsin. They owned a farm their when my dad was a kid, so they would make an annual trip to pick their apples and take a look at all the updates to the farm. Now they simply order their apples from Mariano’s!
I will typically carve out a whole morning/afternoon because there are a lot of apples to prepare, but it’s great to be able to sit down and have one-on-one conversations with my grandma.
Here’s what we do while we chat…
- Cut and core apples – Leave the skins on! This will give your apple sauce a nice pink hue.
- Boil apples until soft
- Over a large bowl, spoon hot apples into a foley food mill and mix until you have a full bowl of sauce (Make sure to add a little bit of the boiled water with your apples so your sauce doesn’t get too thick)
- Add cinnamon and sugar (We will typically start out with 1/2 cup of sugar and a tablespoon of cinnamon)
- Mix together, and add more cinnamon and sugar if needed. (Note: If your apple sauce is too tart, add more sugar)
- Store sauce in canning jars/tupperware in your fridge or freezer.
- Serve cold or warm (I always love to eat a fresh batch when it’s still warm, SO yummy!)
I know the recipe might seem a little time consuming, but it will not disappoint! It’s something I look forward to making every year, and can’t wait to some day make it with our children. And, while it’s one of my favorite fall treats, making it with my grandmother is the part that I will always cherish.
What are some of your favorite fall treats and traditions? Do you cook anything with your family?
Kelly is the face of travel and lifestyle blog, Passports & Cappuccinos. While she is a travel junkie at heart, she loves snuggling up at home with her hubby, a good movie and a scented candle. Her other passions include photography, hot coffees and petting every dog she can find. Working in advertising by day, she uses her blog to share stories of her travels and life in Milwaukee, WI.