Sugar free green apple preserves?

lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)May 3, 2012

BF's son is on the "no yeast" diet and he can't eat but a few fruits, green apples and berries being among them. I would like to make him some green applesauce, maybe some apple/cranberry spread something like that, but I don't have any recipes. I make my own applesauce all the time but I use more tangy apples and add lemon and sugar to may taste, so I'm pretty sure it is acid and sweet enough to be safe. What about canning with sugar substitutes? What ones work? And what acid adjustments would I have to make for green applesauce?

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readinglady(z8 OR)

Lemon juice is optional and sugar is optional, so the best option would be to can plain applesauce and then, if desired, sweetener, spices and/or lemon juice can be added to taste.

No acid adjustments are necessary unless you're canning bruised or windfall apples, which have a higher pH.

There are recipes using Splenda (sucralose). Some people detect a bitter aftertaste; others don't. The keeping qualities once the jar is opened will also be reduced as the preservative effect of sugar is lost. Texture (say a pickle) may also be softer.

There are lots of threads here on Splenda used in canning for those whose health needs require it. Many relate to sweet preserves and non-sugar alternatives in conjunction with Pomona Pectin.

Also the NCHFP has some information. I have linked to one page but if you enter Splenda in their search box quite a few will come up, with recipes.

Here is a link that might be useful: Splenda in Canning

    Bookmark   May 3, 2012 at 5:48PM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

So do you think Splenda is the best sugar alternative to use? I know his diet advice is to use Stevia but I don't know how well that holds up to heat. I usually make applesauce to can for myself with just plain apples, and just a touch of brown sugar and lemon juice for taste more than anything. I can it in very small jars so I can have it as a snack, and that's what I wanted to do for the son. I'm also thinking he could spread it on a rice cake with some almond butter or something. Also maybe something with green apples and cranberry? He can eat berries, including cranberry. I think he can eat xylitol. I can't remember if that is the sugar in Splenda or not.

I was just wondering about using the green apples. I know green fruit doesn't have the same acidity as ripe fruit--take tomatillos for example, which BTW is the only tomato-shaped thing he can eat, since tomatoes are really sugary fruits so they are out! As far as I know, the only type of green apple I have seen in the stores is Granny Smith. Ya know, they are great for pies but I think they make AWFUL applesauce! My usual apples for sauce are Empire, Cortland and Golden Delicious. HMMM, now I'm wondering if Macs count as green apples--they are half green!

Here is a list of the fruits he can have:
Berries, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Green Apples, Avocado, Fresh Coconut

    Bookmark   May 4, 2012 at 8:38AM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

Any apple you prefer can be used for applesauce. Firm-ripe apples of any variety can be processed for sauce sans sugar and/or lemon, so you can certainly can it without any additions and then he can stir in Stevia upon opening and you can stir in sugar and lemon. That's probably the most versatile option. Flavors of sugar alternatives often change during processing and with shelf storage and since they don't improve the preservative effect either, I can't see there's an advantage (aside from a bit of convenience) in adding them before the sauce is jarred up.

You could also do an apple-cranberry sauce or an apple-cranberry jam. Again, both are acid products, so the level of sweetener is up to you, regardless of the kind you use. An apple-cranberry preserve can be made with your sweetener of choice and Pomona Pectin, which will gel at any level of sweetening. Neither of these present safety concerns of any sort.

Green apples of any variety (as in underripe) are more acidic. Ripe green varieties like Granny Smith are still an acidic fruit, so no problem either way. Basically use whatever variety of apple you want, though green underripe apples will gel better in a preserve. Underripe fruit (berries or apples) also have a higher level of natural pectin.

Tomatillos are generally more acid than tomatoes and can be used in any compatible ripe tomato recipe, again with no concerns. So check out sauces and salsas.

Poor kid. He must be going nuts with all the restrictions.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2012 at 1:58PM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

Good to know that I can just can green applesauce plain. I do think that's the best option, so he can sweeten to taste and I don't have to worry about artificial sweeteners going wonky with heat. Splenda is OK with something fresh IMHO, but I don't like it in baked goods so I was imagining it not being too good in applesauce. Stevia is just plain awful, IMHO! Cranberry probably way too tart to can without sugar substitute.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 2:22PM
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dgkritch(Z8 OR)

Can he have cinnamon? I've found that a plain applesauce is greatly enhanced with just a sprinkle of cinnamon.
Either before or after canning.
I was amazed how much sweeter it tastes without ANY added sweetening after the cinnamon addition.

I do all of mine that way now and can also use it when I want to make another recipe calling for unsweetened applesauce.

Try just cooking up one apple in the microwave and taste it, then add just a sprinkle of cinnamon and taste again.

You could add just a few cranberries to the sauce for a beautiful color without a bunch of tartness. Cook them in with the apples and it will color the whole batch ('cuz I think green apples are going to make a funny color sauce if you leave the peels on. Very white if peeled).

And bless you for working so hard at it!!


    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 9:01PM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

Yeah, I'm a cinnamon afficianado in applesauce. My mom prefers plain, but who knows what the son will like. I bought another kind of green apple this weekend--Crispin. Maybe that makes better sauce. I have tried granny smiths and I find them bland. They need something to kick it up a notch, that's for sure! But when you start playing with tart, then you need some sweet to balance it. But sugar level is the no no. It will be fun experimenting! I like the idea of throwing a few cranberries in for color. Son can also have raspberries. I do that with my regular recipe, throw in some red berries for color, albeit my regular recipe has about a TBLSP brown sugar in a batch to counteract the lemon I like to put in it. I always peel my apples before making sauce. I know too much about apples and pesticides!! Throwing in a few red plums makes fabulous sauce, but they are too sugary! Can't use the old red hots trick either! :)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 10:06AM
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