Saturday, November 5, 2011

Apple Pie Filling

With all the apples in season and the gorgeous crop of baking apple available for between $.39 to $.69 a pound in my area, I've been busy putting up my apple supply for the winter and one of my favorite things is homemade apple pie filling. I've been making this alongside my mother for a good 10 years now and even though we don't have the old apple tree in the backyard, we still found a way to keep our costs down on this treat.

I'm a little bit of a rebel when it comes to make pie filling - I don't believe in only using baking-variety apples. Instead, I go by what looks good at the store, what's most affordable, and I prefer using slightly soft apples of many varieties to give the filling a more complex taste. To me, when an apple is no longer crisp enough for snacking, it is perfect for baking and cooking. From homemade applesauce to apple dumplings to apple pie filling to my cinnamon apples - I've got plenty of uses for apples that are past their snacking prime.

This year, the varieties that we used were: Fuji, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Jonathan, McIntosh, JonaMac, Empire, Rome, Honeycrisp, Gala, Red Delicious, and Pink Lady. Last year we scored deals on other varieties, so each year, we just use what's available.

This isn't so much of a recipe as it is an instruction guide. For apple pie filling, the variations are endless - and can be as affordable as you choose to make it. For me, I may look for the best price on apples, but I get several different cinnamons to build up the flavor. I used cinnamon from: Saigon, India, Mexico, China, and Madagascar. If you're using a less potent cinnamon, I would suggest doubling the amount called for in this recipe.

10 lbs. apples - slightly soft, assorted varieties - and the more varieties the better ($3.95)
2 to 3 C. flour ($.15)
1 to 2 C. sugar ($.10)
2 to 3 C. dark brown sugar ($.25)
2-3 T. cinnamon ($.40)
1 T. nutmeg ($.10)
1-2 tsp. ginger ($.05)

Combine all ingredients except apples and set aside.

Peel and core apples, slice and toss with seasoned sugar and flour mixture.
Scoop apples into quart sized freezer bags and freeze. The pie filling will last up to 12 months if properly sealed and frozen.

Yields = 4-5 quart sized bags (each bag will yield enough filling for one 9" pie or 8x8 pan of apple crisp or cobbler)
Cost: $5.00
Cost per bag: $1.00

1 comment:

  1. I've been looking all over for a good recipe for apple pie filling - I'm trying this for Thanksgiving and I can't wait to see how it turns out!