4 Ingredient Homemade Applesauce

Last Friday night in our “frenzy” to use up some apples, K suggested that we make some applesauce. In my experiences growing up apple sauce always seemed like such a hard thing to make. There was coring, peeling, cooking, mashing/grinding, then more cooking. But thanks to my wonderful Betty Crocker cookbook, I found a very simple and fairly quick way to make apple sauce! I will tell you, this is more of a rustic applesauce and not the same consistency you get from the grocery store BUT it taste a million times better!!!

4 Ingredient Applesauce

4 medium cooking apples (1 1/3 lb), peeled, cut into fourths and cored
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup packed brown sugar or 3 to 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Combine apples and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add remaining ingredients, stirring to break up the apples. Reduce heat and let simmer to continue cooking apples. The apples will become very tender and break up. If you want to have smaller chunks, use a potato masher to mix up the apples. Enjoy!

4 Ingredient Apple Sauce

The apple mixture simmering away! Our house smelled heavenly!

Seriously one of the easiest recipes ever! It took about 25-35 minutes for my mixture to get cooked, but I also tripled the recipe. It would probably be less time if you just do the 4 apples. We enjoyed some that night over ice cream and then froze the rest in some mason jars (yes you can freeze food in jars!). For those watching your calories, you can have a 3/4 cup serving for about 100 calories! Healthy and delicious!

The Country Wife

Lightened Up Apple Crisp

Those of you that are my friends with me on Facebook may remember a few weeks back when I posted that K won Best Dessert at my families Christmas cook off this year…he did not make this recipe! His recipe has a lot more sugar and butter; probably why it won! Well Friday night we were both craving something sweet and had a lot of extra apples from the local FFA fruit sale. He suggested I make his apple crisp recipe, but being a competitor in my work’s Biggest Loser competition, I knew I needed to make a healthier version. I browsed the internet for a recipe that seemed better and here’s what I came up with. Its pretty close to the recipe I found except that I made mine in individual ramekins (a present from a white elephant gift exchange).

Lightened Up Apple Crisp

4 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup + 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter

Mix apples, cornstarch, cinnamon, and 2 Tbsp of brown sugar in a bowl. Once coated, place apple mixture equally into to large ramekins or 4 small ramekins. Next mix oats, flour, remaining brown sugar and butter until crumbly. Spoon mixture on top of the apples. Bake at 375 for 20-25 or until apples are fork tender. Enjoy!

Lightened Up Apple Crisp

Fresh from the oven!

We served ours with a little bit of ice cream (would have done frozen yogurt, but we didn’t have any). These are not my any means a fat free dessert! But compared to drenching the apples in a sugar syrup, this is much healthier. This was a special treat and definitely satisfied my sweet tooth…at least for a few days. In the next couple days I will share K’s original recipe for Apple Crisp!

The Country Wife

*Here is the link to the original recipe: http://foodfitnessfreshair.com/2013/09/30/prevention-rds-lightened-up-apple-crisp/

 

Whole Wheat Apple Banana Muffins

Last week our house was being overtaken by gnats…yuck! I’d like to think it was all because we just live in an old house with old pipes (my mother said growing up our old farmhouse did that too); but I know part of the problem was my 6 bananas that were turning brown. In an effort to get rid of the gnats I did some late Friday evening baking. *Warning: Do not Bake at night unless you are really awake!*

Back in college my Grandma S. gave me one of the easiest recipes ever: Banana Apple Muffins. Friday night, knowing I had to use all my bananas I made two varieties of the recipe. First was the original recipe and second I used whole wheat flour. This is really so easy that anyone can make these! It would even be a good recipe to have kids help you with or for anyone who wants to get into baking. The recipe below is for the whole wheat version, mainly because they turned out the best! *Warning: Do not forget the baking soda!!*

Whole Wheat Apple Banana Muffins
1 Stick Butter
1 Cup sugar
1 Egg
3 Ripe Bananas – Mashed
2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Cinnamon
1 Apple – Cubed

Cream together the butter, egg and sugar. Next add in mashed bananas. Mix in the dry ingredients until fully blended. Fold in the cubed apples. Line or spray muffin tin and fill 3/4 of the way full with mixture. For a special touch, sprinkle a little sugar on the top of the muffins. Then bake for 30-35 minutes in 350 degree oven.

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A few notes about this recipe:

  • I like my apple chunks to be a little on the big side so you can actually taste the apple. The first time I made this recipe I could hardly taste the apples!
  • If you don’t like whole wheat flour, just use 2 cups regular flour.
  • Using an ice cream scoop makes getting even sized muffins a lot easier.
  • Baking time is dependent on your oven. Just be sure to check a muffin with a toothpick- if it comes out clean, they’re done!
  • Oh, don’t forget the baking soda…or else your muffins turn out to be albino paper weight muffins! Oops! A downside to late night baking 🙂

Enjoy and I hope you all try to make these super easy muffins! Let me know if you tried something different: Flax Seed? Different Fruit? Less butter? Splenda? Whatever the change, I would love to hear how they turned out!

The Country Wife

Week 3: Motivational Monday

It happens to me every week; Monday morning rolls around and I get this feeling of a new start, plan new goals for the week and get motivation! Usually by Monday at 4:30 when I get off work all those feelings are gone. However, this weekend was not as productive as I wanted since K was sick. I had big plans to get the kitchen clean, organize our closets and clean the basement. Well I got the kitchen clean, but then I decided to make apple dumplings (post to come soon!), so then it was a mess again. We did get all the storage containers bought to put decorations from the craft room closet in and extra wedding gifts we won’t use for a while…but that’s as far as cleaning the basement got.

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Sneak peak of some yummy apple dumplings!

Even though I wasn’t sick this weekend, seeing K relaxed and snoozing all day made me feel drowsy too. Maybe I was having sympathy sickness ha! This was the first weekend since the wedding that we actually had to just relax and do whatever, so I tried to take advantage of that. To try and keep my motivation running longer than 8 hours, I thought I would post my list of goals for the week on here (you guys keep me in check!). I will try to update you throughout the week on how these tasks are coming so stay tuned!

Goals for the Week:

1. Clean Kitchen
2. Continue to organize holiday decorations & closets (See before picture below)

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So much stuff!!

3. DO LAUNDRY (for some reason I always struggle with this)
4. Keep blogging
5. Exercise ( I’m going to start a couch to 5k training this week in prep for a 12/1/12 5K)
6. Edit pics and get ready for weekend ( I am shooting my first wedding this weekend…eek)
7. Remember to enjoy time with my Husband

Ok, well there ya have it. Lucky number 7; I think I can do this. Of course there are many other things to do but these are the important ones. If my mother was reading she would tell me to add thank you notes to this list…But I think I’ll wait! I hope you all have a wonderful week and good luck staying motivated. Feel free to share any of your motivational tips too! They can be for cleaning, cooking, exercise or whatever!

The Country Wife