When I was a kid, a jar of apple butter in the fridge was a sure sign that fall had arrived. My dad was the only one who ate it and, as with most other things, he was methodical about it. Every morning he would toast a piece of white bread, sit down at the kitchen table with the toast, the jar of apple butter and a cup of hot tea, and carefully spread it onto his toast. He’d eat it one bite at a time, slowly and quietly, taking time to savor each bite. Eventually I jumped on the bandwagon and ate it the same way, although probably not as slowly.
Years later, when I’d go home from college on a weekend while the fall foliage was in full force (say that 3 times fast), I’d always stop at this little roadside farm stand to pick up a jar of apple butter. The smells and the feels really remind me of childhood and of home. This Slow-Cooked Apple Butter lets me savor those delicious memories all day long – cause that’s how long it takes to cook!
Not to worry, it’s your slow cooker that does all the work. Your prep time is minimal. Just chop up your apples, throw in the spices, and let the aromas of cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg fill your home for the rest of the day. It’s totally awesome. By nightfall, you’ll have a big ol’ crockpot of smooth, sweet & tangy apple butter – plenty to give as gifts and to keep for yourself. Stored in an airtight container, this Slow-Cooked Apple Butter will last all season in the fridge.
These days, I have gotten a bit more creative with my canvas for apple butter (although my dad still sticks to white toast or saltines). My favorite things in the world to spread apple butter on are the Double Cinnamon Scones that you’ll also find on the blog. This killer combo is like an autumn party in your mouth, and you’ll never want it to end. I’m pretty addicted. Can’t wait to hear what you think. Enjoy!
- 6 lbs. apples – peeled, cored and sliced (my favorites are Winesap, Gala, Macoun)
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. ground clove
- 1/4 tsp. ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- juice of 1 lemon
Combine all ingredients into a large bowl, then pour into the slow cooker. Set the slow cooker to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 12 hours, until thickened and dark brown. Turn off heat, and use an immersion blender to puree the apples until smooth. Alternatively, pour cooled contents into a blender in batches. and puree until smooth.
Transfer the apple butter to airtight containers and store in the refrigerator.