Saturday, October 25, 2008

Canning and Cookies

I spent almost ALL day making and canning applesauce for Josh and I to have for the winter season. At 10 am, I went to Shelton's which is a local grocery store that sells produce and such from the local farms in our area. While I was there, a really nice older man showed me the apples they had available. He showed me their "utility grade" apples, which are basically apples that have blemishes on the skin or a small bruise, but are still good for eating or cooking. They're also half the cost of the "perfect" apples! So I bought a 1/2 bushel of Mcintosh and a 1/2 bushel of Crofton apples for 6.99 each.

I decided not to add any sugar or cinnamon to the apples, so I just cooked them in a large pot. I like more chunky applesauce, so I mashed them with a potato masher. I'd never canned anything before, but I'm proud to say that ever single jar sealed!!! It was such a wonderful feeling of accomplishment to make the applesauce and can it. I think that home cooking and canning is such a lost art in America today. My mom told me that hearing the popping sound of the lids was a comfort memory to her because her mother used to can goods all the time and they would listen for the pops. Some of the jars I used today were my grandmother's, which is also kind of a neat thing. :-)

(I love vintage advertisements! This reminds me of when I was a kid with my mom!)

It took me till 4 pm to finish everything! I was exhausted by the time I was done, and the kitchen was so hot from all the steam and boiling water! Anna came over in the afternoon and she helped me with some of the peeling and cutting, and my mom helped me out too. I was so grateful!

I'm really glad that I have a friend who likes to "be domestic" with me. :-) After dinner, Anna and I also made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, but we both agreed that what made them so good was adding cinnamon to it. The chocolate and cinnamon together reminded me of a cookie version of Mexican hot chocolate. (Mmmm.... one of the best winter treats!) They were quite addicting--I won't say how many I had!

We put the jars of applesauce in a box, and now they're just waiting for a pantry to be stored in! I hope Josh and I can get the apartment fairly soon. I'm thinking of also canning some butternut squash while it's still in season. It would be so convenient for making soup in the wintertime.

I'll post pictures of the canning process soon!

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