I Love the Sound of Canning Jars Popping in the Morning

I am definitely a morning person.  Getting up early, starting the day, tackling projects first thing in the morning is how I work best.  By mid-afternoon my energy and incentive begins to wane, and by dinner, I’m ready to call it a day.  It is rare for me to start a project after 6:00 p.m. because by that point I’m counting the hours until bedtime.

This morning I decided to make a batch of unsweetened applesauce.  I need this for a new recipe that I want to try for chocolate cakes in mason jars.  I have been having a blast making banana bread and apple bread in jars, but the kids have been asking for something chocolate.  The applesauce in my pantry has sugar and cinnamon, so a plain batch was on my never-ending “to do”list.  Finding seven bags of apples on the discount rack at the grocery store, gave me reason to finally undertake this project.

By 7:30 this morning I had the apples peeled and in a stock pot boiling down.  There were a few apples left so into the dehydrater they went.

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With the dehydrater going, I turned my attention back to my applesauce and began to can it.  Two loads in the canner and nine pints later, the applesauce was done and the soothing sound of canning jars popping filled the kitchen.

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Last summer while looking for something to do with apple peel and cores left over from making homemade pressed apple cider I discovered that I could use them to make apple cider vinegar.  I made three gallons that are safely tucked away in my pantry.  Seeing as I don’t need any more of this, I needed another option for the peels and cores.

A few days ago I came across a blog with instructions on how to make apple pectin stock for jams and jellies.  Perfect.  As soon as the last of the applesauce was in canner, I filled my largest stock pot with the peels and cores, covered it with water and set it on the stove to boil.  If you’re interested in the complete instructions, here is the link for the apple pectin stock:

http://localkitchenblog.com/2009/12/08/apple-pectin-stock/

It is now 1:30 and the apple pectin stock is straining through a jelly bag.  I should have this boiled down and canned before dinner and then I’ll call it a day.

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A productive day filled with new recipes, old recipes, home-canned goods for the pantry, apple chips to snack on, and the sound of canning jars sealing in the kitchen, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.

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