Garden is in full production with two-thirds of the summer gone, all except the two apple trees which will produce fruit in fall. However, in an effort to try to use up some of our garden zucchini, I needed to make applesauce. Go with me on this one, it will make sense later, and if not, you’ll enjoy the journey.
First, we’re thrilled that we have zucchini this year because we haven’t had luck with it in our garden since we moved to Oregon 11 years ago. Thank you zucchini mom Cheri, who grew our plants from seeds and tended them in her green house. They LOVE their planted spot in our front yard. I baby them with kind words and the leftover whey from making ricotta cheese, and I could swear I heard them whisper “thank you.”
Now when we lived in Southern California, it was a different story. We couldn’t pick the zucchini fast enough or give enough away. Neighbors and friends would start avoiding us during “zucchini” season after they had been loaded up earlier in the summer.
Second, since we have zucchini this year, I’m trying some new recipes for the blog. Next week I’ll be revealing a zucchini bread taste off — healthy versus traditional. So what does all this have to do with applesauce? I needed it for one of the healthy bread recipes. I didn’t have any applesauce on hand, so I made it. I used to do this all the time when the kids were small. So easy to make and much healthier.
And “C”, I wanted to see if I could peel an apple in one piece. (This paragraph is technically “third” – I wanted to see if you were paying attention and in case you thought I had lost my train of thought which I often do.) I have an apple slicer/corer/peeler that does this, but I wanted to try it for myself. You know, like Meg Ryan does in “Sleeping in Seattle.” And then she realizes that Tom Hanks is talking on the radio telling how his dead wife used to do the same thing. Awe, kismet. Love that movie.
In case you want to know how to peel an apple in one piece, here’s a short video on how the Chinese peel an apple.
You can use most any apple to make the applesauce. I use sweeter apples so I don’t have to add sugar. What’s your favorite apple? Mine is honey crisp but they have spiraled out of my price range. On recommendation of the produce manager at our local grocery store, I tried the jazz variety. And, after all, it was was on sale! In case you haven’t heard of this variety, here is some info from Orange Pippin:
“Jazz was developed in New Zealand in the 1980s. It is a cross between two other major apple varieties – Braeburn and Gala.”
It is close in flavor and texture to a honey crisp and won me over quickly.
My peel looks a little ragged, but I did it!
Chunked apples with a little water in the pot to simmer.
Good old potato masher to smash up the soft apples into applesauce.
Freshly made applesauce warm or cold is the best! No sugar needed.
Two apples made just enough for the zucchini bread recipe with a spoonful or two leftover for the cook.
Be sure to check back next week for the zucchini bread challenge – I will be featuring three recipes and revealing the winner next Friday. Serious taste testing going on currently. 😉