The legend of John Chapman, better known as Johnny Appleseed, was born in the 19th century. As the legend goes, this pioneer of U.S. apple orchards spread apple seeds everywhere he went—Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois—in order to cultivate the sweet fruit that now fills quintessential American desserts like apple pie and apple crisp. Since his death in 1845, Chapman has been memorialized in countless books, songs, and films. To celebrate his contribution to American life, try this recipe for applesauce that you can set and forget; well, at least for a couple hours. It’s delicious as an after-school snack, a topping for oatmeal, or baked into a crisp.
Makes about 4 cups
- 6 apples (about 8 cups), peeled, cored, and cut in 1-inch slices or cubes. Note: Any variety of apple will do, but tarter apples, like granny smith or jonathan, may require more sugar.
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 3-4 Tablespoons sugar
- 3 Tablespoons water
- Place apples in crockpot.
- Add remaining ingredients and cook on high for four hours, or low for six hours.
- Mash with a fork after cooking for a chunky texture, or blend with an immersion blender or in a blender, when cooled, for a smoother consistency.