Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Sandy's Browned Butter Applesauce


This delicious, Browned Butter Applesauce is a recipe I had saved from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel food column of Sandy (Sanford) D'Amato, a James Beard Award-winning chef and former owner of famed Sanford Restaurant in Milwaukee. He sold his restaurant to his talented chef-de-cuisine and moved to New England with his wife to write his cookbook and memoirs, Good Stock, and has recently opened a cooking school in Massachusetts called Cook Stock Farm Cooking School. With autumn and apple season in full throttle, I made his recipe this past week.


Speaking of New England, I was the VERY fortunate winner of a seafood giveaway from Fresh New England recently!  El lives in and promotes New England through her gorgeous photography and amazing baking skills. The giveaway was her way to celebrate the recent launch of her new website, Fresh New England Eats which, with her team, promotes the New England food community.  Not only did I win 2 beautiful, live, New England lobsters...

 

...but an entire clambake for two including mussels, steamers and clam chowder direct from Ipswich Shellfish Market in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  They were a pleasure to contact and very helpful with tips on how to store the shellfish until time to cook them. The shellfish came beautifully chilled and packaged this past Friday, arriving early the very next morning after it was shipped, which just happened to be National Lobster Day!


Two very dear friends, who have many years of lobster boils under their belts, were invited to share our bounty, cooked over our back yard fire pit.  We supplemented with Gulf shrimp, Littleneck clams, Wisconsin corn-on-the-cob, locally made sourdough bread and my garden tomatoes. A delicious collaboration of East meets Midwest, and, what a feast! Warm clam juice, melted butter, and seafood sauce were supplied for copious dipping of the shellfish.  FYI, I had never eaten New England Steamers before and they are unlike any other clam I've eaten. Thankfully, our friends had and were able to teach us how it's done. They are delicious!

The clams, mussels and shrimp were wrapped and tied in cheesecloth 'bags' for the boil and were our first course followed by the lobsters, corn and tomatoes for the main course. Here is an easy method for an Indoor, Stove-top Clambake from Ina Garten if you'd like to try one at home! Ours was kept simple with no other additions to the water for the boil.

Not only were the fresh shellfish delicious and a special treat in itself, but we were lucky enough to enjoy a gorgeous, early fall evening with the almost-full Supermoon overhead! It was a magical night!


If all this weren't bounty-enough to shout about, I also received this charming, vintage-replica basket loaded with New England goodies from El! A variety of crackers, preserves, raspberry and hibiscus jam (oh my), New England honey and maple syrup, country ketchup, and a bottle of craft made, pure cranberry soda mixer. The basket also included Food Rules - an eaters manual by Michael Pollan, which is wonderfully well written, humorous and beautifully illustrated.  I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to live a healthier life by eating good, natural food.


Thank you very much to El, Fresh New England and Fresh New England Eats for this amazing, delicious, bountiful, fresh, New England prize!!

Sandy's Browned Butter Applesauce

Adapted from Chef Sanford D'Amato
Printable Recipe
Use this wonderful applesauce to top pancakes for breakfast, add to cottage cheese for lunch or serve with pork chops or roasted pork for dinner. Even the apple peels are put to use. It is loaded with the rich flavors of cardamom, butter, vanilla extract and a touch of bourbon.

Makes approximately 1 quart

My Note:  Instead of mace, cardamom and cinnamon, I used Penzey's Baking Spice mix which contains all three.

2 tablespoons salted butter
4 pounds Gala, or another tart apples (about 6 large), peeled (reserve peels), cored and cut in half, each half cut into 8 pieces
2 bay leaves
½ teaspoon ground mace
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, cassia preferably
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Cider peel liquid:

1 tablespoon butter
Reserved apple peels
¼ cup bourbon
1 ½ cups unsweetened apple cider

Place a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. When hot, add the butter, let it melt and turn golden brown. Immediately add the apples and stir. Add bay leaves, mace, cardamom, cassia cinnamon and salt.  Cook, covered and stirring regularly, so that the apples evenly turn a light golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat.

To make the cider peel liquid, place a large sauté pan medium-high heat. Add the butter and, when hot, add the peels and sauté, stirring, for 4-6 minutes, until golden. Remove from heat and add bourbon and cider. Place back over the heat and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Puree this mixture in a blender, then strain through a medium strainer while pressing on the solids — this should yield 1¼ cups.

Add the cider peel liquid, vanilla and lemon juice to the cooked apples and cook for an additional 5 minutes, stirring, over low heat. Remove bay leaves and puree coarsely by pulsing in a food processor. Adjust seasoning with salt and refrigerate until needed.

Fresh applesauce will keep for about 10 days refrigerated or, up to a year in the freezer.

63 comments:

  1. Sounds wonderful. I just picked up some local applies today and will give this recipe a try.

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  2. Beautiful! Did you ever make the products shine!
    And to share with great friends in your beautiful backyard..what could be better?
    Love the basket too..I have a very very similar one..Gosh I feel there were not enough lobsters this year..at all!
    The browned butter applesauce looks so good too Susan.The cardamamom;):)

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    1. Thank you, Monique! It was such a delicious meal and I love lobster. The applesauce is wonderful!

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  3. PS and what a beautiful blog you lead us to:)

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    1. It is beautiful, isn't it? El is a very talented photographer and her baking is mouth-watering. I've followed El for about five years already and I have so many recipes I've saved of hers to try.

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  4. What a fabulous feast, Susan, and you were the perfect person to be the winner of such a lovely bountiful feast. Sounds delicious :)

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    1. It was a fabulous feast, Cynthia! Thanks so much :)

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  5. Oh my! How wonderful! It sounds like so much fun and I am glad that you shared the bounty, making it all the more joyous. the applesauce sounds a bit too spicy for my timid palate, but I do like the idea of browning the applesauce. I see that you have one of those unique pink pumpkins with those peanut like structures on it. They are so cool!

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    1. Thank you, Vee! You're so right, it was much more fun to share it than eat it by ourselves! As for the applesauce, you could just use cinnamon, sugar, lemon juice, salt and water, don't bother with the peel/bourbon part and you'd have a very simple and still-delicious apple sauce. I love those pumpkins too ;)

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  6. Congratulations on winning! Wow - What a feast you had. Looks like the pretty basket came with lots of tasty treats.
    The apple sauce sounds so good. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

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    1. Thank you, Glenda! It was a feast. I feel very fortunate to have won!

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  7. Sounds like you're having fun and eating very well! I haven't gotten anything from Penzey's yet but hear great things about them:@)

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    1. We are :) Penzeys is wonderful. We are also fortunate that it's a Milwaukee-area company :) I have a Penzeys store just a few minutes away and I'm there frequently.

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  8. The applesauce sounds wonderful! I can imagine it would be fabulous on all sorts of things. What a fun and delicious evening you had too!

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    1. Thank you, Chris! It's real comfort food to me. We did have a great night!

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  9. Hi Susan , this look absolutely delicious !! Im sure :)

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  10. Oh my goodness, there is nothing better than seafood from Ipswich, Mass...especially their clams. The lobster looks good, but I am a clam person! I miss living in New England when I see posts like this.

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    1. I didn't know you lived in New England, Marigene! The clams were wonderful!

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  11. Wow aren't you lucky to win all of those terrific goodies!!! A beautiful fall night, does it get any better?
    I just picked apples last weekend and was thinking about apple sauce. I love the idea of browned butter. I've already peeled and frozen them, so no peels left. I think I will see if I can adapt this one somehow? I'm intrigued by the bay leaf!m Hope you're enjoying a beautiful fall so far, we've had amazing weather here!

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    1. Yes I was extremely fortunate, Julie! I don't think the apple peels are crucial to the recipe. The seasonings are what makes it unique. Thanks!

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  12. I am loving all the Fall happiness in this post, from the get together to the applesauce! It makes me want to get my friends together for a friendly gathering and share some dishes. Looks like a great night!

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    1. We've had a cold front push in since Saturday so we feel very happy that the weather cooperated for us :) Thanks, Pamela!

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  13. wow Lucky you! And I am so glad that you had a great Fall evening with some awesome food.
    Lovely applesauce as well, Susan.

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  14. A New England feast with friends - life doesn't get any better than this. Add a touch of fall to the air and you have a perfect evening. I would love to taste your apple sauce; it's so pretty.
    Sam

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  15. That looks like a perfect evening . . . and browned butter applesauce sounds very intriguing. A gotta try.

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    1. Thanks so much, Rosemary! It was the perfect end to September.

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  16. Oh my goodness, browned butter applesauce sounds like the best idea ever!

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    1. Freshly made applesauce is the best! Thank you, Cathleen :)

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  17. Wow, what a great give away! Looks like you had a wonderful evening :) The applesauce looks tasty too-haven't made applesauce since my kids were little. Something to make with my extra apples. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

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    1. It was a wonderful giveaway! I hadn't made applesauce in ages either - so glad I did :) Thanks, Lynn!

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  18. This is certainly not my grandmother's apple butter!! It looks and sounds delicious. I'll plan to surprise my apple butter eaters!! I must check out the blog you shared as we love learning more about New England now that our son lives there.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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    1. Ha-ha :) No, it is certainly 'chef'd' up a bit ;) You'll love El's blog! Thanks, Bonnie.

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  19. Wow, Susan what a win! Looks like a wonderful get-together to enjoy all of the goodies! I just love homemade apple sauce and apple butters! Happy fall!

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    1. The win was amazing but the gorgeous fall evening made it spectacular. Thanks so much, Roz!

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  20. What a great experience - and such a wonderful basket - congratulations! Love the applesauce too - it sounds and looks amazing! Have a great weekend!

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    1. Thank you, Tricia! Isn't the basket pretty? You'll probably be seeing it as a prop in a future post one day :)

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  21. Wow! You made a beautiful feast. I'm so glad you and your friends were able to sit outside and enjoy all of that delicious seafood. Thank you for sharing the photos - they're wonderful!

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    1. Thank you again, El! Everything turned out so well that it truly was magical with all of the very special shellfish from Maine. A very generous giveaway for which I am so thankful. Evening photography is so difficult and I didn't take time to get a tripod but I hope everyone gets the idea of how wonderful an evening it was. ♥♥

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  22. Ya gotta' love Penzey's Spices! Your applesauce looks divine and I've got a bunch of apples to put up and will try your recipe. Thanks Susan.

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    1. Yes, indeed, they are wonderful spices! Thank you, Renee!

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  23. This sounds amazing --- I love that you included mace in the spices!

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  24. What a lovely feast, Susan ! Your applesauce looks delicious! a warm hug

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  25. How lucky to win a fresh seafood dinner and share it with friends. That makes even better, Your applesauce looks amazing, love the weck jar you have it in.

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  26. Love lobster boils! We used to do one every Christmas Eve. Looks like you had a great feast. (I think I saw some maple syrup in the box. :) )
    The applesauce even looks like it has brown butter in it....super idea. Bourbon doesn't hurt, either. Miss my Michigan yard full of apple trees! But I still make it every fall....must try this recipe now.
    Great post, Susan.

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    1. What a wonderful tradition, Barbara! Yes, it's pure Massachusetts maple syrup from Shattuck's Sugerhouse :) Thank you!

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  27. What you just described has to be my dream meal. Especially being outside makes the experience double magical. I'm drooling just thinking about it! And now to this applesauce. I've never tried one with butter. That will have to change!

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  28. What beautiful gifts you won! I still remember New England lobsters from my university days in NH. Your applesauce is simply delicious Susan!

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    1. How wonderful that you went to school in New Hampshire, Katerina! I'm sure you had wonderful seafood there. Thank you :)

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  29. Your post has made me homesick for New England and I've only been gone a couple of weeks. I know that you had to enjoy all that delicious seafood and your applesauce looks great. As we said a last goodbye to our former home, our apple trees were loaded and just waiting for the new owners to start picking.

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    1. I'm so sorry it made you homesick, Karen! I'm sure you will love where you are now! Sometimes change is a good thing :) Thank you!

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  30. Your applesauce sounds delicious, Susan! And you definitely hit the jackpot with that great win! Bet you and your friends had one fantastic dinner!

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  31. Looks like an amazing evening! This is the most fancy, gourmet, and delicious looking applesauce I have ever seen! I bet it's fantastic!

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  32. Wow Susan what a feast! Best of all you shared it with special friends on a beautiful fall evening with the perfect surroundings including the full moon! What could be better? Congrats on the win! And your apple sauce looks divine!

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  33. Wow Susan, what an amazing dinner...everything looks fabulous!
    The brown butter apple sauce just sounds to delicious...and can imagine the rich brown butter taste in it.
    Hope you are having a great week :)

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  34. Congratulations on your win!! The prizes look so amazing! The applesauce looks so good too, browned butter sounds like an amazing addition.

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