The first step is to core and slice the apples soaking them in lemon juice and water so they don't discolor after they are sliced. Last year I had my apple corer and made rings (it's still back at the other home) and I also added the optional red food coloring (also back at the other home). So this year we are doing half slices and no red food coloring. Results are the same!
You then make a syrup with 4 cups water and 4 cups sugar (now this is for 10 lbs. of apples, so I cut the sugar in half). Boil the syrup for 5 minutes and to this I did add a little bit of spices - cinnamon sticks and allspice cloves in a cheesecloth. This is removed before canning. You then add the apples (drained of the lemon soak) to the syrup and let stand for 10 minutes. Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes.
The apples will cook down and release liquid of their own so there is plenty for the canning process. After the 30 minutes you remove the apples and let cool. Once cooled pack into jars leaving 1/2" headspace. Ladle hot syrup over the apples, remove bubbles, adjust the caps and Voila!
Process quarts 20 minutes in boiling water canner.
Recipe is from Ball Blue Book of Preserving
I snapped a shot of our soybean field on the way to town....don't I look so lovely in that sideview mirror?? We have about 8 acres here that a local farmer plants and harvests for us, then we share the profits with him. It looks to me it still has a ways to go before harvest. Heard some very Sad news today on the radio...this county is included in the Agricultural Disaster program for Illinois which was just put into action. Many, many crops failed due to excessive rain and flooding in surrounding areas so farmers are able to apply for assistance from the government.
Relying on the weather for a good harvest can be a tricky and scary business especially with the extremes we have been experiencing in the last few years.