No Better Butter Than Apple Butter

November 19, 2013

The last time I helped make apple butter was the day captured in the photo above. I was five and my biggest concern was getting a turn at stirring the large iron kettle of homemade apple butter. I remember that day like it was yesterday...the chilly air, the bubbling apple butter, smoke rising from the huge iron kettle, the dance class I went to midday, the cousin time, and the moment I stopped being afraid of my grandparents' German Shepherd (note above). If I can remember so much and so vividly, it must have been quite an exceptional day. Needless to say, I haven't made apple butter since, but have had high expectations if it were to ever happen again.

Then this past Saturday came and so did two bushels of apples, a whole lot of sugar, some cinnamon, and a jug of apple cider. With a pot big enough to cook it all down and twelve canning jars, apple butter was the clear option. As much as I would have loved a huge kettle smoldering from the fire and emitting the sweet smell of cooking apples outside our home, we made do with what we had. Husband knows me well and kept a fire going in our fire pit to give us my most favorite smell of burning wood (can you smell it??) and to rekindle my childhood memory. We put crockpot beans on, cut our Hickory Farm cheese and summer sausage, baked hot chocolate brownies, and turned the Virginia Tech game on. Not such a bad way to spend a Saturday, huh? Now we are stocked up on some super tasty apple butter and excited to whip it out when we're craving some toast on one of these chilly fall/winter mornings. Thanks to husband's parents for the apple butter idea!