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Browned-Butter Applesauce

Browned-Butter Applesauce

My goodness, Lovelies. It’s been nearly a year since I posted. A year!

Tsk. Tsk. Shame on me! While I’ve been away from blogging I have been doing many things, most notably attending grad school for my MFA (Masters of Fine Arts) degree while continuing to teach at our local community college, raise two active & involved kiddos, and be a good wife, sister, daughter, & aunt to the people I love most (many of whom have been struggling with health issues this past year). What I haven’t been doing is cleaning my house, sleeping, following the healthiest-for-me lifestyle.

And I feel it.

With just one semester until graduation, I’m refocusing my energies on realizing my own vibrant health. I am striving to be fit in every sense of the word: physically, emotionally, mentally. You’ll notice two major changes around the site:

1. I’m now an im-perfect paleo follower. I allow grass-fed dairy. I may occasionally use rice. I love a good green juice in the mornings. To those of you who identify as Paleo Purists, I have no intention of offending you or forcing my beliefs on you. I respect your choices because I am certain you have valid reasons for them. I, too, have valid reasons for mine. Let’s agree to disagree on a few points and we’ll be fine.

2. I’m going to focus a bit more on whole wellness, not just Paleo. I have a love affair going on with Bikram yoga, and I’m going to share it with you soon! We’re also going to discuss some strategies for emotional well-being in the age of overwhelming stress. (Especially since we parents who so lovingly tend to the needs of our children tend to forget to provide equally loving self-care).

So, without further delay, here’s a welcome back to blogging recipe idea for you to try. I’ve included pictures (remember: don’t judge my house–I’ve been busy with grad school and teaching and parenting and care-giving) and approximate measurements (I’m not much of a measurer).

I don’t know about you, but I love apple pie. It is buttery, filled with the goodness of cinnamon apples, and touched with just a tiniest hint of creamy vanilla. (Unless, of course, we’re talking a la mode, which is its own hazard…) The thing is, apple pie doesn’t love me. The added sugar, the refined crust, the empty calories, all send my PCOS into a tailspin. So, in an attempt to preserve all the flavors I love, I give you my favorite way to make applesauce:

Browned-Butter Applesauce

Ingredients:

  • Four(ish) apples (I used a Granny Smith, two Galas, and a Jonah Gold)
  • Three(ish) tablespoons grass-fed butter
  • Pumpkin Pie spice (or cinnamon and nutmeg in a 2:1 ratio)
  • Vanilla extract (five to ten drops, really not a lot at all)

Method:

IMG_9708Peel, core, slice the apples to approximately a 1/3″ thickness (don’t measure, it’s not that critical–just don’t slice too thin or the apples will turn crisp instead of soft).

Arrange the apples in a single layer on a buttered baking dish (use about 1 tablespoon of the butter to grease the dish; I prefer to use a baking stone).

Cut the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter into small pieces and arrange evenly over the apples.

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Sprinkle the entire tray of apples and butter with the Pumpkin Pie spice.

A little. A lot. You’re the boss.

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Bake in a 350* oven until the apples are soft and browned (do not crisp your apples!). You should turn them occasionally while they are baking. The time will depend on your stove, your apples, your altitude. Adjust accordingly. The more browned your apples, the more the sauce is reminiscent of apple pie.

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When the apples are thoroughly browned and soft you can mash them into sauce one of two ways: with a fork or with a food processor. You know your people. Do they like chunky sauce? A fork is your tool. Smooth operators? Process away!

Mix in a touch of vanilla extract and serve warm or refrigerate and serve cold. But enjoy it either way!

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