Homemade Canned Caramel Apple Pie Filling
Tis the season of canning and baking!! And what says Autumn more than apple pie!
I may not be lucky enough to have my own orchard, but I have one locally that stocks a wonderful selection of apples at a great price. I love the fact that I get to support a local business while I stock my own pantry.
Apples are best when they are in season, even though I know that grocery stores stock them all year long. But who knows where they came from, how they were grown, and how fresh they are considering they probably had to travel thousands of miles to get to the shelf where you buy them from. I would rather preserve my own locally grown, in season apples while I am able to.
Most of my household loves a freshly baked pie. I make traditional apple pie filling too, but I love this twist on the expected.
The added bonus of having it canned and in the pantry?
Anytime we are craving a fresh apple pie, I can run down to the pantry, grab a jar, dump it into a pie crust and be done. No peeling or prep work at all. Talk about simple.. and truly delicious.
Once you have it canned, just dump it into your prepared pie plate, dot it with some butter, and cover it with your second crust and bake at 350°F for 45-50 minutes. You may want to cover the crust edges with foil or a pie crust shield (I have this one) for the first 30 minutes. I always remove mine for the last 15 minutes of baking so that the crust browns like we like it.
- 10 pounds tart apples - peeled, cored and sliced ( approx. 20 cups sliced)
- 5 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cup Clearjel (cook-type)
- 1 T. cinnamon
- 2-1/2 cups cold water
- 5 cups apple cider
- 1 tsp. nutmeg
- 3/4 cup bottled lemon juice
- For fresh apples, place 6 cups at a time into 1 gallon of boiling water and boil one minute when it comes back to a boil. Drain and keep covered in a bowl.
- In a stockpot, mix the sugar, Clearjel, cinnamon, nutmeg together. Add the water and apple cider, stir to mix well. Bring to a boil and cook until thick and bubbly, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Add the lemon juice. Fold apples into mixture.
- Pack the apples into hot, sterilized quart size canning jars. Best way to fill is in layers. Using the funnel ladle one large scoop and using the spatula press the apples down in the jar to remove the bubbles. Continue filling using this technique so that you fill the jar with as few air bubbles as possible. Fill the jars to 1" headspace.
- Wipe the rims with a paper towel dampened with vinegar (caramel will be very sticky) and place the hot lid/rings on the jars. Process in a water bath canner for 25 minutes at a full rolling boil. Wait 5 minutes, remove and place on dishtowel overnight undisturbed. The next day remove rings and clean jars and label. Store in a cool, dry, and dark place. This recipe will make 6 - 7 quarts.