- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/4 cup apple cider
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon ground mace
- 10 medium apples, peeled and cut into large chunks (about 2 1/2 pounds)
- Combine all ingredients in a 5-quart electric slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 10 hours or until apples are very tender.
- Place a large fine-mesh sieve over a bowl; spoon one-third of apple mixture into sieve. Press mixture through sieve using the back of a spoon or ladle. Discard pulp.
- Repeat procedure with remaining apple mixture.
- Return apple mixture to slow cooker. Cook, uncovered, on high 1 1/2 hours or until mixture is thick, stirring occasionally.
- Spoon into a bowl; cover and chill up to a week.
- Combine all ingredients in a Dutch oven.
- Cover and cook over medium-low heat 1 hour or until apples are very tender, stirring occasionally.
- Strain through a sieve as recipe instructs in Step 2.
- Return mixture to pan. Cook, uncovered, over medium-low heat 15 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently.
Sous Vide Variation
- Preheat the water bath to 200°F (93°C).
- Place the diced apples in a nonreactive bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
- Quickly transfer the mixture to a food bag and vacuum seal, or place in a zip lock bag and seal using the water displacement method. (The apples generate a lot of juice once they’re diced.)
- Cook for 12 hours.
- Allow the bag to cool just long enough to handle.
- Strain the juices from the bags (I reserved the juice for an apple glaze for a pork roast) and transfer the apples to a blender.
- Purée until smooth.
- If you plan on using the apple butter within a week, transfer to a clean jar or container, cover, and refrigerate. For shelf-stable storage, process in a water bath following safe canning protocols.