I’ll admit, fruit isn’t something I buy a lot of unless it’s fresh berries in the summer. Fact: the smell and taste of brown bananas actually make me queasy. Anyhow, I had a hankering for applesauce again when I saw the pictures of our pork belly meal from a few weeks back, but I wanted to kick up the flavors a bit. The apricots bring a depth of flavor that the apples just don’t have on their own, and the fresh ginger is warm and gives a bit of spice. If you decide to leave the applesauce chunky, be sure to mince the ginger very fine so you won’t bite down on any large pieces. If you don’t have a fresh vanilla bean lying around you could add 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract instead. Serve this alongside grilled or roasted chicken for a nice departure from the old pork n’ applesauce combo.
Prep time: 15 min Cook time: 45 min Makes: ~4 cups
3 lb of apples (I used Gala but any will do – a mixture of a few varieties seems to make the best sauce)
6 fresh apricots, pitted and roughly chopped
1 tsp fresh minced ginger (sub: 1/4 tsp powdered ginger)
1 vanilla bean, halved (sub: 1/2 tsp vanilla extract)
1. Peel and roughly chop the apples. Place the apples into a heavy-bottomed pot and cover loosely.
2. Cook the apples on medium-low for about 30 minutes. You may need to add some water as the apples cook down so they don’t stick to the pot. Stir frequently.
3. After 30 minutes, add the apricots and the minced ginger. Cook about 10 more minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla bean seeds.
4. Use a food processor to make the texture to your desired smoothness. I left a few chunks so the apricots would stand out a bit.