I was going through some of the old files I have managed to save over the years and ran across this saved web page. Though the website is no longer in existence, I hope you will enjoy this page by Melana Hiatt as much as I do!
Making Apple Sauce
#1. On Monday clean out your freezer of all the unsweetened applesauce you saved last fall for use in quick breads and muffins and set it on the counter to thaw. Mention to hubby that you could use those new quart canning jars to make applesauce if you only had a water bath canner. Put applesauce in the refrigerator and listen to family complain all week about how crowded the fridge is.
#2. Wake up on Saturday and feel guilty about normally ignoring your family and make some of the best cattail pollen pancakes they ever had. Make plenty of extra silver dollar sized pancakes from the batter and make sure to mention to the kids how great these will be in the freezer since they will be able to get their own breakfast for some time this way.
#3. Clean up kitchen but leave a sizable stack of cattail pancakes on the back burner of the stove to cool since you are in a rush to go on a quick foray before it gets too hot out to look for more pollen. Tell youngest daughter to put the dog outside, make juice and clean up her room. Take oldest daughter and head for the canal.
#4. Find out when you get to the canal that a farmer has sprayed the ditches around his fields poisoning the water that drains into the gully that flows into the canal. Mentally stick several pins in the farmers voodoo doll and think about what you would tell that man if he was handy. Start riding home in disgust only to stop and pick two huge bags of red clover blooms to dry for teas and breads.
#5. Get home and find that the dog has drug the plate of cattail pollen pancakes off the stove and consumed each and every one of them. Resist urge to kick the dog since he loves your cooking and wonder when kids will come fully equipped with hearing and comprehension equipment.
#6. Get all the strawberries out of the freezer that you collected and stemmed last week and set them on the counter to thaw. Give dog evil eye of death when he starts to check the berries out to see if they are edible. Make enough noise to get hubby out of bed and mention the water bath canner and all the applesauce in the fridge.
#7. Get 4 bowls of strawberries that are in the fridge that where collected the day before and sit down to stem them. Realize the two bowls collected by the kids are absolute mush and un-stem-able. Dump mess in the French Press, leaves, stems and mangled berries and cover with boiling water.
#8. Follow pectin box directions for making strawberry jam. Add pectin to 4 cups of crushed berries and bring to a boil. When berries are boiling add 7 cups of sugar and bring back to a rolling boil. After boiling for one minute pour into sterilized jars. Lick fingers and realize you will have to eat the lint trap from the dryer to get the ultra sweet taste from your mouth. Wipe rims of jars and seal. Put load of laundry in washing machine.
#9. Dig around for an hour looking for a better jam recipe and realize you always used the 4+4+1 method with wild berries. (4 cups berries plus 4 cups sugar plus one box pectin. Mention to hubby that the applesauce will be growing legs soon and will attack us all in our sleep if you don’t get it canned.
#10. Make second batch of jelly using above method and dance around gleefully when it turns out perfect. Sit and listen to tops pop signaling the sealing of the jars and stare at strawberry juice/tea and wonder what on earth you are going to do with it. Hang clothes from washing machine on the line and start another load so that you can forget it and the cloths can sit until the next day.
#11. Chase hubby out of the house to take the kids for haircuts mentioning a water bath canner at least 3 more times before he gets out the door. Wipe off counters, wash all implements of destruction, scrub kitchen floor and and decide to make pancake syrup out of tea/juice setting in the French press.
#12. For every 1/2 cup juice add one cup sugar and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer 15 – 20 minutes to thicken and dig around for that syrup bottle you know you put downstairs with your other jars. Locate bottle, scrub off the label and pour syrup into bottle to cool. Taste and realize how good this would of been on the cattail pancakes. Resist urge to kill the dog.
#13. Take jar of jelly to neighbors and sit with her talking bad about men, dogs and taxes.
#14. Realize hubby and kids are home and give hubby passionate kiss in the kitchen for buying the water bath canner. Look deeper into bags and give hubby major brownie points for finding the rubber rings you needed for the antique glass top jars you bought at a yard sale last weekend. Tell hubby you would have an affair with him if he wasn’t already a married man.
#15. Take brand new cold packer to the bathroom and fill with water from the tap. Lug it to the kitchen and place on the stove to boil. Dig around for instructions for applesauce and give up when you are unable to locate one. Dig all applesauce out of the fridge along with the monster jar of apple butter you made last fall and the ginger/apple marmalade you made last winter. Dump all this in a pot and sample.
#16. After sampling mixture and add half a jar of cinnamon and who knows how much sugar. Stir and sample again. Deem mixture okey-dokey and begin to heat. Drag fan out of the bedroom and struggle for 15 minutes to find a plug-in to stick the cord into.
#17. Go into basement and collect jars for applesauce. Wash them in water so hot it takes the top layer of skin off your hands. Rinse jars, drain sink and refill with hot water. Place jars in water along with lids and rings.
#18. Get tired of waiting for applesauce to reach some sign of cooking and fill sterilized jars ahead of time. Wipe rims, seal and realize the scalding pot of water in your water bath canner is way to high and struggle to drag it over the the sink to dump half the water out.
#19. Place jars in water bath canner rack and get disgusted when they keep falling over in the rack. Remove rack and place on counter. set all the jars in the rack with a heavy coffee cup in the middle to keep the 6 jars you have from falling over. Place in packer and walk outside.
#20. Walk around house and do not stop until you are standing in the middle of the pool. Sit down to drown out the sounds of your kids asking what is for supper.
#21. Twenty minutes later come up for air and walk back into the kitchen soaking wet and dripping to pull the applesauce out of the packer. Set jars on the counter to cool and give children the evil death ray look for asking again what is for supper.
#22. Order pizza and contemplate moving to the mountains and becoming a hermit.