Pink Oven Roasted Apple Sauce

Fear not!!!! No berries were harmed during the making of this applesauce. In fact, no berries were even involved in the making of this applesauce. Truth! 100% pure apple goodness here ladies and gent.

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What? No raspberries? No strawberries? No lingonberries? Yes, that's right! NO BERRIES!!!

The secret to my witchy ways...a little apple known as William's Pride.

Named after a university professor out of Purdue, Mr. Edwin Williams, William's Pride is a very special little specimen. One of the first apple's of the season it is noted for its thick, super rich-red skin, that when cooked and mashed produces a flamingo pink sauce. Unfortunately, as it cools the color does get darker, but it's still pink!

Secret two? Use the entire apple when you cook the sauce. No you will not get arsenic poisoning! I've been making apple sauce this way for a little less than a decade and I'm still alive and kickn' post-apple season. Here is an article about apple seeds if you are at all concerned. Bonus for using the whole apple, more applesauce! Obviously you need to use a food mill to separate out the seeds, pith, stems and core, but it makes chopping them up a real treat. Slice and toss in the pot. Not tedious peeling and pairing required!

Secret three, slow bake it in the oven. No this isn't going to help with the pink, but will help you if you are a busy parent!  Or pet owner. Or just gosh darn busy! Instead of chaining yourself to stove for incessant stirring and scorching monitoring. Set it in that oven and forget it for an hour or two. A little cool time, food mill it and presto, chango. You've witched your way into not only a delicious applesauce but also one that still makes the pig-tailed, pink-obsessed four year old in me light up every time I pop the top for a spoonful.

There you have it. I made mine shelf stable and canned my sauce for safe keeping into the winter.  Follow your manufacture's instructions or Blue Ball for proper canning techniques. Now knock out some pink sauce! Recipe follows below.

Pink Oven Roasted Apple Sauce

Makes 3 pints

IMPORTANT: To make the sauce pink 1/2 of your apples MUST be William's Pride apples

approximately 10-12 cups unpeeled AND uncored roughly chopped apples

1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup water

1/4 cups dark brown sugar

spices:

1-2 each: cinnamon stick, cloves & all spice tied in cheese cloth satchel

1.. Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Wash the apples and chop them (if you have not done so already). Combine the apples, vinegar, water dark brown sugar in a dutch oven. Tie the spices in a double lined cheese cloth, place in the dutch oven, cover and place in oven for 45 minutes.

2. Check the apples,  add more water if they are threatening to burn. Reduce the heat to 325ºF and bake for another 30-45 minutes.

3. After the 30-45 minutes, remove the dutch oven and remove the cover and allow the apples to cool for 20 minutes or so. While the apples are cooling make sure that your pint jars have been sterilized and there is hot water ready and waiting for preserving in your canner.

4. After the cooling period, send the apples through a food mill into a large bowl. After you've food milled all the apples, deposit the sauce into your sterilized pints.  Fill to approximately 1/2 inch below the rim. Wipe rims and process for 20 minutes according to manufacturer's instructions.