Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Overnight Apple Butter & Happy Holidays!

Please head over to my new blog at TheUrbanHousewife.com, where you'll find this post & more!

The holidays are officially here & some of us are still scrambling to find gifts or collect ingredients for the dish we want to impress family & friends with. Homemade gifts are a great way to show you care, not to mention they're environmentally friendly! I decided to try my hand at canning for the first time & opted to employ my crock pot to make Apple Butter for my friends & family. For those of you looking for a last minute gift, this may be the perfect match!

Overnight Apple Butter
Ingredients:
4 1/2 lbs of apples, peeled, cored, & sliced (I used a mix of Granny Smith, Red Granny, Pink Lady, & Fuji)
1 cup Brown Sugar
1 cup Agave Nectar
1/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tbsp Cinnamon
1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract (I love Nielsen Massey!)
1/4 tsp Cloves (optional)

Instructions:
In a crock pot, add your sliced apples, then the rest of your ingredients.Mix well to cover apples in the spices & liquids.

Cook on low for 8 hours, until apples are soft & fragrant.

Using an immersion blender, puree the mixture until smooth or desired texture.

Turn the crock pot to high, remove the lid, & allow the mixture to simmer until thickened & reduced. This can take anywhere from 1 1/2 to 3 hours, depending on your desired thickness.

A wooden spoon should be able to stand in the mixture & when you put a dollop on a plate, liquid should not seep out.

This yields 6 to 8 cups of apple butter & is perfect for half pint mason jars.

My holiday celebrations have already started with a weekend trip to Southern California to see Ryan's family. At Ryan's request I made, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies. They turned out flatter than I'd hoped, but that didn't stop them from being devoured, especially by Ryan & his friend Josh. Once I acquire more white chocolate chips, I'll have to make these again with some adjustments.

For dinner I made a dish I have been loving lately, Chipotle Chili With Sweet Potatoes And Brussels Sprouts. The recipe originally appeared on Isa's blog over at the PPK, but I love it so much, she gave me permission to re-post it on Eat. Drink. Better. This is an excellent dish to share with those with a fear of vegan food, as it lacks processed vegan ingredients & substitutions. Just tell everyone you made sweet potato chili & watch people gobble it up!

I hope everyone has a happy holiday season, whatever they may be doing. I'm not sure I'll get another post in before the new year, but I am look forward to another year of blogging & reading about delicious vegan food throughout all the seasons!

50 comments:

havecakewilltravel.com said...

happy holidays, M!

Becks - Not a Rabbit. said...

Happy Holidays Melissa, Ryan and Strummer!

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

Happy Holidays! A visit to Southern California sounds pretty nice right now!

Early Bird Special said...

Mmm! I love apple butter! This recipe sounds really yummy and easy to make, hopefully I'll be able to find the time to make some.

Sweet potato chili?! That sounds awesome!

Happy Holidays to you and yours. I hope all is merry and bright!

xoxo
Amy

Stacey said...

Those half pint mason jars are so cute! I didn't know they came in that size. The cookies look awesome! At least it's not a cooked mound of dough like mine usually are. That chili looks great!

VeggieGirl said...

Oh my, I need those treats. Every single one.


Please??? ;-)


HAPPY HOLIDAYS, MELISSER!!!!!!!!

mad about udon said...

I would much rather get a homemade gift than anything else. Specifically, I would love if someone made me apple butter! :-) Happy Holidays!

Jessie said...

Those white chocolate macadamia cookies look amazing! I like flat, chewy cookies as opposed to fluffy ones, so these look perfect to me.

allularpunk said...

happy holidays! your apple butter and cookies look so yummy :) i've been meaning to try that chili, and as i believe i have most of the ingredients in my house (for once) it might become xmas eve dinner. mmm!

Cakespy said...

Yum, the cookies look awesome. I'm not adverse to a slightly flat cookie. They look perfect to me! I am an apple butter devotee, and this one looks amazing!

Hannah said...

Apple butter is such a treat, but I've never made it in the crockpot before... I must try it!

Happy holidays, Melisser! :)

Lily Girl said...

Welcome to canning! Proceed with caution, it is highly addictive. That little "ping" after pulling the jars out of the canner, that sound of success, yeah - that's my crack :)

Mandee said...

Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year, Melisser!

I love the white choc & macadamia cookies!

shellyfish said...

Happy Holidays Melisser!! I'm going to give that overnight apple butter a shot once we're home after the holiday - I love that stuff!

herbstsonne said...

It all looks so tasty!! :O Yum! If I don't talk to you again online soon, I hope you (& Ryan & Strummer) have an awesome time at your mommy's, merry christmas! :)

Vegan_Noodle said...

Not sure I have time to make apple butter this xmas... but it will be on my list for next year! (maybe I'll make some for myself sooner)

Happy holidays Melisser! I'm looking forward to another year of blogging and blog reading as well...

julie hasson said...

Love the apple butter!

Happy holidays!!

XO Julie

Vegetation said...

Mmmm I've never made apple butter before, it looks delicious! And anything I can throw in my crockpot is a bonus :)

quarrygirl said...

those cookies look insanely tasty! i have not had white chocolate since becoming a vegan. mmmMMMMMmmmmyum. i am still sad we couldn't work out a meetup when you were in socal.

happy holidays! looking forward to reading your posts in 2009. :)

DJ said...

Happy Holidays, Melisser! Love the apple butter idea!

aTxVegn said...

Happy Holidays! I can't wait to see what the next year brings in the way of vegan eats and treats, especially from you!

Bethany said...

Happy holidays & have a great new year.

The apple butter looks fabulous. I agree that handmade food gifts are good all around.

I think the cookies look great. I love flat cookies.

The chili looks really great. I'm a huge brussels sprouts fan. I think they look so alien when you buy them in the store still on the stalk. too funny.

River said...

What a great idea Melisser! Your homemade apple butter looks fabulous! I would have devoured those cookies in no time too!

I hope you're having an awesome holiday season!

Emmie said...

Oh apple butter! Delicious. I have a TON of home made apple sauce in the freezer but I'm the only one who eats it. Sadly, I don't think apple butter would be any more well received by my partner.

JennShaggy said...

I do have a serious fennel addiction. I always myself I was going to explore the wonders of other roots, but it has my heart. Unfortunately, no one wants my heart because my breathe repels them ;)

PS Thank you for the cocoa powder madness.

KZ said...

I gotta try this apple butter! great idea. here's to a yummy '09.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Happy Holidays!!! As usual, your food all sounds delish :o)

...barbara... said...

awesome is all i can say...
awesome....
happy holidays...

Joanna said...

your apple butter looks amazing!!! i've always been too afraid to can anything. i'm such a wuss.

Vegyogini said...

I love sweet potato chili! Next time you are in SoCal and have some free time for a blogger meet-up, let me know. Have a very happy and healthy 2009. :)

Lindsay I-F said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Kala said...

Mmm, gonna have to try that apple butter (minus the cloves though because they are pure evil)!

JennShaggy said...

Now you should know by know that I don't mess around, young lady :)

Sal said...

The cookies look perfect to me and good idea to cook the apple sauce overnight, I love my crockpot but he has been neglected lately!

I'm too late to wish happy holidays so happy new year!

Liz² said...

happy new year melissa!
(I could eat your flat cookies maybe, I love flat cookies. ;P)

jodye said...

I love the look of those white chocolate macadamia cookies! yummmmmm

Vivacious Vegan said...

I can almost smell your apple butter. What a great gift idea. I really need to get all the canning supplies so I can be more self-sufficient.

vijita said...

Hi Melisser, I'm a massive fan of your blog! I'm going to be super annoying and ask (nay, beg) you to send me the recipe for your white choc chip macadamia nut cookies! See the thing is, I just went to the UK and finally found my very first ever vegan white chocolate and I am dying to reproduce the cookies of my youth! I have tried some of your recipes and even scored some candy corn from Ameyfm, so I know I can trust the recipe! I promise to blog about them. If not, no worries, just thought I'd try! You can email me at oi_to_the_world_(at)hotmail.com Happy holidays!

The Diaries of a Pseudo-tramp said...

ooh,i love apple butter!

bjorkedoff said...

i haven't had apple butter since i was in kirksfield at my aunts in late november and i was eating it staright from the jar(SOOOO good)with peanut butter and the next day i was doing the same thing,but she was there and we were talking and she's like "oh my god,where'd you find that,i would not do that" and it turned out that the jar was atleast a year old.same thing happened with her tahini,but i was fine.i guess.hadn't had it in forever before that either.mmmm.

herbstsonne said...

I'm totally making apple butter this weekend, I've been trying to figure out what to do with the apples my grandma gave me (that are starting to go baddish).

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