Apple Pie Filling

Since apple pie is a North American tradition, homemade apple pie filling is a wonderful staple to have on hand. In addition to the classic pie, it allows you to quickly turn out luscious desserts such as apple turnovers, apple crisp or apple-dumplings. The addition of cinnamon and nutmeg adds warmth to sweet or tart apple slices.

Yield

makes about seven pint jars

Ingredients

12 cups sliced peeled cored apples, treated to prevent browning* and drained (about 12 medium)
water
2 3/4 cups granulated (white) sugar
3/4 cup ClearJel®**
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
2 1/2 cups unsweetened apple juice
1 1/4 cups cold water
1/2 cup lemon juice

Directions

Prepare boiling water canner, jars, and lids. Heat jars and lids in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Set bands aside.

In a large pot of boiling water, working with 6 cups at a time, blanch apple slices for 1 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm in a covered bowl.

In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine sugar, ClearJel®, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir in apple juice and cold water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, and cook until mixture thickens and begins to bubble. Add lemon juice, return to a boil and boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Drain apple slices and immediately fold into hot mixture. Before processing, heat, stirring, until apples are heated through.

Ladle hot pie filling into hot jars, leaving 1 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding hot filling. Wipe rim with clean cloth. Center lid on jar. Screw band (ring) down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process for 25 minutes, adjusting for altitude***. Remove canner lid. Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed. Store.

Additional Information

* To treat apple slices to prevent browning, apply a produce protector, such as Ball® Fruit-Fresh® Produce Protector, according to the manufacturer's instructions or submerge cut apples in a mixture of 1/4 cup lemon juice and 4 cups water. For more information about treating your fruit to prevent browning see Preventing Discoloration when Canning Fruit.

** ClearJel® is a cooking starch that is acceptable for use in home canning. Not all cooking starches are suitable for home canning, as reheating causes some to lose viscosity. Making mixtures too thick can interfere with required heat penetration during heat processing.

*** If you are canning above 1,000 feet sea level, see Canning Altitude Adjustments to find how much additional processing time is needed.

Place a clean towel on your work surface to absorb water from the hot jars as you take them out of the water bath (boiling-water) canner to be filled, and again once the jars are processed. The towel prevents hot jars from coming into contact with cooler countertops. Significant temperature differences can cause jar breakage.

A jar lifter is very helpful for handling hot, wet jars. Because they are bulky and fit loosely, oven mitts — even water-resistant types — are not a wise choice. When filling jars, an all-purpose rubber glove, worn on your helper hand, will allow you to steady the jar.

A clear plastic ruler, kept solely for kitchen use, will help you determine the correct headspace. Each filled jar should be measured accurately, as the headspace can affect sealing and the preservation of the contents.

When preparing jars and lids, prepare a couple extra in case your yield is larger than you expect. If you don't have enough jars, place any leftovers in an airtight container; store in the refrigerator and use within a few weeks.

Before using jars, inspect them carefully for any chips, cracks or fractures. Discard any imperfect jars.

See Canning & Preserving Glossary for a description of terms used in this recipe.

Before canning each season, review canning procedures. See Canning & Preserving Basics to refresh your memory with the procedures.

Recipe Courtesy Of

Ball Home Preserving

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