makes 3-4 500ml jars
Apple butter is a concentrated and caramelised apple purée with cider and cider vinegar. It’s delicious spread on hot, buttered toast and crumpets as well as on tarts, cakes and with cheese. You can add a few spoons to dressings, stews and casseroles to add a rich sweetness and it works perfectly served as a condiment with grilled chops or roast pork.
Pre-heat the oven to 120°C/250°F/GAS Mark ½ (or use the slow oven in the aga) Peel, quarter and core the apples.
Tie the peels and cores into a muslin bag (like you would for marmalade with the pips and pith).
Place the bag and chopped apple into a large pot and then add the cider vinegar and cider.
Bring to a simmer and cook for at least half an hour or until the apples are all soft. Remove the bag, leave to cool slightly then squeeze back in any juice from the bag. Blitz until smooth along with the rest of the ingredients. Place in an ovenproof pot and bake in the oven for about four hours, whisking every 45 minutes (you can whisk in any skin that has formed on top). It should have thickened and be a deep caramel colour. Transfer into sterilised jars (like you would when jam making).
The apple butter should keep for at least six months in a cool, dry cupboard or you can put it into suitable containers to freeze for up to a year.