Apple Butter is an American Classic. It is a lovely spread for bread, crackers and as a dip for fruits. Nothing tastes better than a slice of piping hot bread, fresh from the bread maker, spread with a heavy covering of Apple Butter.
15 or so medium sized tart apples (four or five pounds) - Macintosh are nice.
4 cups apple juice or cider
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups sugar
Wash, core and quarter apples. It is not necessary to peel the apples. Place the apples in a large kettle or Dutch oven along with the juice or cider. Bring to a boil then cover the mixture and simmer for about 30 minutes, making sure to stir occasionally to prevent sticking. Now press the mixture through a sieve or a food mill. Return about 10 cups back to the Dutch Oven. Stir in sugar, and spices (and everything nice). Bring to a boil and then reduce heat yet again. Leave uncovered and over very low heat cook for about one and a half hours until mixture is very thick. Be sure to stir periodically and frequently to prevent burning on the bottom.
Here is the canning part: Spoon apple butter into hot, sterilized canning jars (pint or half-pint do nicely). Leave 1/4 inch head-space. Wipe rims and adjust lids. Place in a boiling-water canner for 5 to 10 minutes (5 minutes for half-pints, 10 minutes for full pints from the time the water begins to boil). Carefully take jars from canner and allow them to cool on racks. The result is about 4 pints. So double up on recipe for bigger batches!
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