Applesauce and cheddar bread

April 21, 2012 § 11 Comments

I wish I were better at canning.  And not because I’m buying in to some fantastical homesteading fantasy that’s just part of the zeitgeist.  I swear.  Ok, well, I totally do fantasize about homesteading, we’ve talked about this before.  But not for the self-sufficiency part of it, which is what we as a populace are being accused of.  I’m way too communal of a creature for that.  Homesteading appeals because it is a way of feeling things again, of feeling physical strain toward a goal and of feeling something you’ve made in your hands.

But, the real reason why I wish I were better at canning is so that I can do like my friend Anna did the other night as we were all finishing up dinner.  Something in the conversation seemed to trigger a spring in her mind, and she leapt up from the table exclaiming, “do you want some really amazing applesauce that I canned that tastes just like fall?”

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When life gives you bruised, mushy apples…

February 23, 2010 § 2 Comments

It is not apple season in these parts.  During the crystalline fall days in New England, when the sky is the blue of the eponymous Crayola crayon (sorry, I just really wanted to use the word eponymous) and the leaves are so colorful it seems like they’re just showing off, then there is quite possibly no better place in the world to get apples.  At that time of year I gorge myself on dozens of varieties from farmer’s market stalls and local orchards.  I just can’t get enough.  I have kind of a thing for apples.  Especially cut into exactly four pieces.  Don’t ask.  One of the best days of my life was when I visited a variety grove for one of my agriculture classes – hundreds of obscure varieties of apples, and we were allowed to taste as many as we liked.  I almost missed the bus back home, I wandered so deeply into the expanse of the orchard.

Anyway, this is all getting back to the fact that, right now it is not apple season, unless you are in the southern hemisphere.  I generally feel guilty about buying apples shipped from New Zealand, so I try to do the seasonal thing, but sometimes I succumb to the desire for an apple (I identify with Eve in the garden of Eden, but more for wanting to eat the fruit, less for wanting the knowledge) and I buy some local storage apples, that have been waiting out the winter in dark crates.  They’re almost always bruised and kind of mealy.  The ones I just got certainly were.  But even if your apples are mealy, all is not lost.  It makes for a perfect excuse to make applesauce! « Read the rest of this entry »

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