I’ve got your toast ready!
That would be your fresh-baked slice of Grandmother Bread toasted and buttered and slathered with the sweet brown sugary goodness of Caramel Apple Jam!
I got this recipe from Shumom, who posted it on the forum. Apples, brown sugar, cinnamon……. Yum! I love apples. And brown sugar. And cinnamon. (Is that combo not so autumn?) I had exhausted my freebies from the apple tree at the old farmhouse, so I trekked off to the farmer’s market for a bushel of locally-grown apples. They had “pretty” apples for $25/bushel, so I said, “Where are your ugly ones?” They had “deer” apples for $10/bushel. They were just a bit too ugly (as in, lots of bad spots). I settled on these for $15/bushel. They let me pick the best and fill up a big bushel-sized box.
And I went jammin’!
I differed from the original recipe slightly in that rather than coring, peeling, and dicing six cups of apples, I simply cored, roughly cut, and cooked the apples then put them through a food mill. This eliminates that whole peeling mess, and with a bushel, I’m so not into peeling! So instead of starting with six cups uncooked, diced apples, I started with six cups cooked apple pulp. This makes a few differences in your outcome–for one thing, the consistency of the apples is more what you normally use for apple butter or applesauce. Of course, there’s pectin involved, which makes more of a gelled “jam” effect. So in the end this creates something of a cross between a butter and a jam. It leaves, however, the caramel flavor intact. Some people might even mistake it for apple butter, minus the intensity of the cloves and plus the warm sweetness of brown sugar. Whatever you call it, it’s good.
(Canning is easy, by the way! If you don’t know how, check out my How to Can: Hot Water Bath Method.)
How to make Caramel Apple Jam:
6 cups cooked apple pulp
1 package fruit pectin
2 cups sugar
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Get your water boiling in your canning pot, rack tucked inside. Boil lids in another, smaller, pot, and remove to dry on a paper towel using tongs. While water is coming to a boil in your big pot with the rack, place prepared apple pulp in another large pot.
Add pectin and bring to a full, rolling boil. (Add 1/2 teaspoon butter to reduce foaming.)
Meanwhile, get your sugars measured and ready. As soon as apple pulp and pectin are at the boil, add sugars and the 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon all at once.
Return to boil and keep at the full, rolling boil for one minute.
Remove from heat and ladle immediately into clean jars. Place lids on top, screw on bands, and lower onto rack in your pot of boiling water. Cover and boil 10 minutes. For me, this made 4 pints or 8 half-pints per batch.
Canning is a big to-do and takes over your whole kitchen for several hours, turning it into an assembly line. It’s fun!
I had some leftover apple pulp–not enough for a whole ‘nother batch of caramel apple jam–so I made applesauce. I’m not a huge applesauce fan, but I like to use it in baking. For that reason, I don’t oversweeten my applesauce. You may want to add more sugar to this recipe than I do, but this works for me.
How to make Spiced Applesauce:
(per pint batch)
2 cups apple pulp
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon allspice (or cinnamon or nutmeg)
Place apple pulp in a large pot. Add 2 tablespoons sugar per pint of apple pulp in the pot. Bring to a boil. Add allspice and stir in well. Ladle into jars and process in a hot water bath for 20 minutes.
All together, my bushel of apples yielded two dozen pints of Caramel Apple Jam and Spiced Applesauce.
I’ll be using the Spiced Applesauce for all kinds of baking, muffins in particular. The Caramel Apple Jam will find its way into many recipes, too. Glazed pork and chicken, jam thumbprint cookies, biscuit twists, coffeecake….
A dollop, along with a tablespoon of creamy fresh goat milk, in my oatmeal on cold winter mornings…..
Oh! Your toast! I’m sorry…….
You took too long. I ate it.
See these recipes at Farm Bell Recipes for the handy print pages and to save them to your recipe box:
Caramel Apple Jam