Sunday, October 18, 2009

How You Like Them Apples?




I live to tell about the enormous task of picking, peeling, coring, chopping, rendering, caramelizing, spicing, stirring, pouring, boiling, and cooling involved in the production of 150 four-ounce jars of apple butter. From our auspicious beginning on Friday morning to our conclusion last night, in total, 12 hours were spent in the alchemical transformation of apples to butter. 
We imbibed hot beverages, moved on to pizza and wine, spilled hot apple butter on our socks, listened to Daft Punk and viola concertos (amongst other assorted and sundry tunes), swore, laughed, and got the job done. We became a well-oiled machine, finding each others grooves and rhythms and processes. We had a clearly defined goal and we didn't stop until we achieved it. May the sales staff at Sterling enjoy sampling our apple butter provisions as much as we enjoyed making them! 

9 comments:

I'm a Girl Too said...

Wow, that's amazing! I'm so impressed. I can't even imagine that production level. I do 6 jars and that takes me all day.

tigress said...

omg! you guys are canning machines!
150 jars. i think the most i've ever canned at one time was 30 jars worth.
i can definitely relate to the music, wine and spills during a long canning session. :)

Anonymous said...

Wow! What an accomplishment.

EcoGrrl said...

shut up that looks so good! :)

Vickie's Michigan Garden (my backyard) said...

You must be exhausted- that's a lot of canning.
vickie

Alison Russell said...

Sounds like a Wonderful Time was had!

Tony R. said...

Wow. I'm at a loss for words. We just did up 34 jars and I thought THAT was a lot. again, WOW!

heather said...

Wowza. What I want to know is HOW you did it!!?? Very impressive indeed!

ashley english said...

Heather-we tripled batches of the "Canning Classic: Apple Butter" recipe from my forthcoming "Canning & Preserving with Ashley English" book. The pectin content of apples is high, so it could take being tripled, something I'd never do with a low-pectin fruit, like berries.
We then processed 19 4-ounce jars at a time, using the rack as a second layer. It took 8 rounds of processing!
Honestly, the hardest part was the preparation. Peeling, coring, and chopping the 55 lbs. took almost 3 hours! Then we cooked each batch down with water for 45 minutes. An immersion blender was then plunged into the apples to puree them. After that, sugar and spices were added and cooked for 25 minutes; then we jarred and processed. Long, arduous, and definitely worth it!