Local apples are in! The earliest varieties of apples are showing up now in area farm markets.
Local farm markets are seeing the earliest apple varieties coming into market now, and the availability of organic apples is a huge bonus: according to the Environmental Working Group’s 2013 report ‘Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides,’ conventionally grown apples are in the top 12 fruits and vegetables on which pesticide residues are most frequently found. Add to that the fact that most commercial grocers sell apples that are waxed with petroleum-based waxes which contain solvent residues or wood resins.
Apples are a good source of anti-oxidants, fiber and vitamin C. Apple nutrients are overwhelmingly contained in the skin, making it a particularly valuable part of the fruit.
Sugarcreek farm market and PNC 2nd Street market are two good sources for early-harvest apples. If you purchase in larger quantities, you will save some money and have plenty of apples for making applesauce! Applesauce in the slow cooker is pretty much the easiest thing ever.
- 6 cups of cubed apple, peeled or unpeeled
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Put everything in the slow cooker and gently stir to blend. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours. After the apples have cooked, mash them for chunky applesauce or puree in the blender for a smooth applesauce.
Applesauce can be stored in the refrigerator for several days, or frozen, or canned in jars in a boiling water bath.
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