North Carolina grows some amazing apples – fun fact: NC is the 7th largest producer of apples in the United States. The North Carolina department of Agriculture estimates that over 8 million bushels of apples are produced here per year! Thankfully, I can get my hands on a few bushels of apples to share with family and friends every week or so from about September to April. If you are used to store bought apples, eating a fresh-picked apple just rocks your world.
There is no comparison. Most apples – organic or conventional – purchased in a supermarket have been sitting around for months in storage silos – sometimes harvested a year ago. Did you not know this? Kristin at Food Renegade wrote a little piece about this earlier this year…
I love getting apples that have just been harvested here in NC. Apples stored at home are best stored in plastic bags in the refrigerator – 30 to 32 degrees is the optimal temperature. (Unless, of course, your house has a root cellar…I am super jealous if you do!) Refrigerators are a good temperature but the relative humidity is too low to keep them fresh.
When I notice that I have a few too many apples or a few too many damaged apples, I peel them and toss them into the crockpot for applesauce. Slow Cooker Applesauce cannot get any easier. Apples – as many as you want to use, apple cider, honey, cinnamon. That’s it. Let it cook. Your house will smell amazing and anything not devoured that day can be cooled and stored in the fridge for later.
|North Carolina Grown Apples …|
Slow Cooker Cinnamon Applesauce
- 8 to 12 apples , peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup apple cider
- 3 to 4 tablespoons honey
- 2 to 3 cinnamon sticks
Place all of your ingredients in a slow cooker.
Cook on low for 6 to 7 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours.
Mash the apples at the end if you like chunky applesauce or puree your apples with an immersion blender if you like your sauce smooth (don't forget to remove the cinnamon sticks!).