Our big beautiful apple tree is loaded with apples again. And so is the ground beneath it. I can only feed so many to the animals, and they get more than enough from the ones that fall into the pasture.
The tree is a McIntosh. Which were first brought to the United States from Canada in the early 1900’s and were very popular. I bet our big old tree is close to a hundred years old. To me it feels like a wise and magical tree.
So when I saw all those apples on the ground and tons more on its branches, it just felt wrong to me to let them go to waste. Maybe I’ll make apple sauce I told Jon. I know he didn’t believe me, I didn’t believe me. Before I met Jon, I used to cook and I used to love to bake. I never liked cooking and I don’t like to bake anymore. But I don’t mind chopping up… well, just about anything. I even don’t mind cutting some of Jon’s pills in half. And of all the things I could do with the apples, apple sauce seemed the easiest.
So I started picking up the apples from the ground, separating them into two buckets, edible ones and already rotten, ant infested ones. I got two 5 gallon buckets of the rotten ones and one 5 gallon bucket of the edible ones, then stopped picking them up. There’s still a carpet of apples under the tree.
Then I went on-line and looked up a simple applesauce recipe. The simple recipe I found had so many ingredients in it, I ignored all of them except how much water to use and how much sugar. Then I stared peeling and cutting apples and tossing them in the pot. I cut the amount of sugar recommended in the recipe in half and stopped adding water when it seemed soupy enough and sprinkled in a lot of cinnamon. Then I just let it cook adding apples as it boiled down till my 5 gallon bucket was empty.
When most of the apples were cooked I turned off the heat and let it sit on the stove overnight. (not before tasting it of course, and I must say it was lumpily delicious with just the right amount of tart).
In the morning I realized I had a lot of apple sauce. So I had some with breakfast and as a snack. It was too sweet for Jon, and I looked wearily at the big pot of apple sauce wondering how I would eat it all.
Then my friend and Chloe expert, Eli showed up. We were going out to lunch together and I mentioned the apple sauce. (Eli doesn’t cook either, but loves when her husband Ken, makes applesauce). So I got out a big bowl and filled it up to the top with apple sauce and sent it home with Eli.
I still have a lot of apple sauce left, but I think I can handle it (I’m actually eating some as I write this). And I have a nice collection of apples for the next batch. Which I’m going to make with maple syrup so Jon can share it with me.