Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Canned Apple Pie Filling

After picking an enormous amount of apples the beginning of the month I knew as the kids were picking every apple in sight that I would be making more apple pie filling than I planned to use for upcoming holidays.  This yrs batch was awesome, though I'm sure it's the freshness of the apples and all the love that goes into it that makes it better than the ones on store shelves.  Some jars may even become gifts with the frugal Christmas we'll be having this yr!

Canned Apple Pie Filling
Makes 9 quart jars of filling.
2 quart jars make a 9"pie

You will need:
12 cups sliced peeled cored apples, treated to prevent browning* (about 12 medium apples)
8 cups water
3 cups apple juice
4 cups granulated sugar -may substitute 1 cup of granulated for brown sugar
2 tsps ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup ClearJel® (cooking starch used for preserving) or 1 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup lemon juice
8 (16 oz) pint glass preserving jars with lids and bands (though this made 9 jars of pie filling for me and one small jar of just the filling; which we use on pancakes/waffles)

*mix a little lemon juice with the sliced apples

1.) PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside.
2.) BLANCH apple slices, working with 6 cups at a time, in a large pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm in a covered bowl.
3.) COMBINE sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large stainless steel saucepan. Stir in apple juice and cold water.
-Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, and cook until mixture thickens and begins to bubble.
-Add lemon juice, return to a boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
-Drain apple slices and immediately fold into hot mixture. Before processing, heat, stirring until apples are heated through.
4.) LADLE hot pie filling into hot jars leaving 1 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles with spatula. Wipe rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band until fit is fingertip tight.
5.) PROCESS jars in a boiling water canner for 25 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.

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