Apple Slices

janisjOctober 11, 2010

Hi all. This is my first attempt at apple slices, and I'm having some issues. Per the instructions, I boiled in light syrup for 5 minutes. Final product? Lots of foam and apple slices that are very mushy and falling apart.

A couple days ago I made apple pie filling, and it actually turned out great with the 1 minute blanch.

Are my apples suited for apple slices or should I just make a batch of apple sauce? Can I cook for less than five minutes, or could I cook in apple juice or water and add the simple syrup to the jars (instead of getting all of that foam in my jars)?

Thanks so much for your thoughts. Of course, my second batch of apples is almost ready to go into the canner. It is nice to have the kiddos help, but they may be too productive in this circumstance, as I would love a minute to think about what I should do :)

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A lot could be the variety of apple you are using. I've done MacIntosh, Pink Lady and Granny Smith - which all pretty much turned to mush in the jar. Fuji's have held up wonderfully as sliced apples.

The point of the 5 minute boil is to get the air out of the apples. Otherwise the air comes out of the apples in the canner, and you end up with floating jars - which are then not safe to eat.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2010 at 8:25PM
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zabby17(z5/6 Ontario)

Agreed; to can slices, you want some more sturdy apples. Spartans hold up well.

With the others, make sauce or butter.


    Bookmark   October 11, 2010 at 9:40PM
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Thanks so much for the insight! I'm not sure about the variety of apple, but they must not be well suited for being canned in slices. They are very mushy!

I didn't attempt the second batch. My daughter graciously helped me slice all of the halves, and I did a quick batch of apple pie filling. Final count: 18 quarts filling, 12 pints filling, 15 pints applesauce and 10 pints of really mushy and super sweet apple "halves". I need to make another batch or so of applesauce.

Any good ideas for the rest of the apples? I have about 1 1/2 bushels left to go. Thamks again!

    Bookmark   October 11, 2010 at 10:44PM
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Do you have access to a dehydrator?? We love dried apples here! I've done all the same things you have but also make 8-10 batches of Linda Lou's Apple Pie Jam which is amazing on everything and makes great gifts! You may go through more applesauce then the 12 pints in a year if you bake with it or use it as a meal with biscuits (my husband is from the South)!

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 12:13AM
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val_s(z5 central IL)

I second Angela on the Apple Pie Jam - it's a favorite here. I also do a something called Apple Preserves with cinnamon.

I follow the Ball Complete Book's recipe for Apple Preserves with nutmeg. We didn't care for that at all (in fact we pitched the last 2 jars) so I substituted cinnamon for the nutmeg. We loved it!! This year I cut the amount down on the cinnamon when I made it. You don't need to sub the equal amount and cinnamon goes a long way.


PS - I also dried apples this year. That way, next spring when we start running out of Jam, I can uncork my apples and make more :-)

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 9:27AM
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zabby17(z5/6 Ontario)

Apple butter? It uses a lot of apples as it cooks way down!

Cranberry-apple relish? (Doesn't use too many and you have to get cranberries, but is really yummy!)

And really, you can't have too much applesauce. It keeps well (no need to eat it all this year---if you still have lots by next fall, you can concentrate on canning two years' worth of tomatoes or something else then!). And you can use it in baking, as a side dish, or --- our fave --- for breakfast.

Also, it's fun and tasty to change up the applesauce by mixing in other fruits. Apple-pearsauce is great, apple-blackberry is divine, apple-cranberry or apple-plum are not only yummy but a gorgeous colour for gift giving. Only a small amount of other fruit included makes a big taste difference. (If you do berries, cook them separately and put through a sieve or food mill to take out seeds.)

Finally, how about freezing slices dipped in lemon juice bath to use for making crisps? Freeze the amount called for in your fave crisp recipe, and you're all ready to top and bake.

(angelacan, I married me a southern boy too, and having lured him up to live in the frozen Great White North, I figure the least I can do is bake him lots of biscuits... which go great w/ apple butter, btw! ;-))


    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 9:28AM
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OMGosh.............we were drowning in apples this year and other than about a peck of hard 'keepers' I worked up as many as I could tolerate and we left the rest for the deer. I have six standard trees just coming into their maturity and as many older trees who still produce in a pinch. I don't know how many bushels I processed but I know several of the trees gave me multiple bushel baskets full.

Yes, apple butter is a good way to use a lot of apple. I also have made up half pint jars of spiced, pickled apple rings for fancy meals.

Two years ago, I made about a dozen apple pies and froze them. Just pop the in the oven when you have unexpected company or are too tired after a busy day to bake. Ditto apple crisps to freeze in those disposable aluminum pans. Ditto Ozark pudding. Bake it and freeze it. You can freeze sliced apples, too. Simmer them for juice and strain to make apple jelly. Make some fruited applesauce. They mix well with cherries, for example.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 9:03PM
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girlbug2(z9/10, Sunset zone 24)

Re apple varieties for apple pie filling--I just did a batch with pink lady apples slice 1/4 inch thick. They held up beautifully. It was only my second batch of APF ever, my first made mostly from Jonathans and Golden Deliciouses.

Pixie lou, I'm thinking it may be your recipe that overcooks the apple slices? My recipe calls for first blanching the slices for one minute (but only after water returns to full boil), then keeping warm in a covered pot while you make the clearjell mix. While everything is as hot as can be, fill into hot jars, alternating layers of jell and apple slices, removing air pockets as much as possible with that bubble tool thingy, and then seal with 1/2 inch headspace. Process in BWB.

No mush, no foam, no floating jars.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 12:30PM
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