Here is a bit of a Scandinavian twist on good ‘ol applesauce. My in-laws have a fantastic apple tree that lost a lot of apples in a wind storm. We gathered two bags full of apples just from what had fallen and there are still loads of them on the tree.
Since I finally purchased an apple peeler/corer I decided to make applesauce but have always found the color to be a bit boring. I had some lingonberries on hand and thought ‘why not?’ So in they went with the applesauce. I love the color and tartness of the end product. It brightens my mood every time I use this on my morning oatmeal. When I was growing up we always had applesauce with pork chops and this version of applesauce would work well too. If only I could get my hands on some of those amazing, thick, Iowa pork chops. Mmmmm.
Applesauce with Lingonberries
Makes about 2 cups (can easily be doubled)
You can use a single sort of apple or blend them for variety. Pippin, Rhode Island Greening, McIntosh, Elstar, Cortland, Fuji, Gala, and Gravenstein all work well.
2 1/2 pounds (1.1kg) apples
4 ounces (110g) lingonberries, fresh or frozen
1/2-3/4 cups (120-180ml) water
1/2-3/4 cups (110-170g) granulated sugar, to taste
4 cups (1 liter) water, optional
1/4 cup (60ml) lemon juice, optional
1. Peel, core, and roughly chop the apples. To help prevent the apples from browning while you are working you can place the chopped pieces in 4 cups (1 liter) of water with the 1/4 cup (60ml) of lemon juice added.
2. Remove the apples from the water with lemon, if using, and place them in a large saucepan with 1/2-3/4 cups (120-180ml) water depending on how juicy the apples are. Add the lingonberries and cover. Simmer, stirring often, over low heat until tender but not mushy. About 20 minutes.
3. Add the sugar and cook, stirring until the sugar is dissolved, about one minute. Taste and add more sugar if need be. At this point you can determine what you want the consistency of your applesauce to be. For a chunkier applesauce you can break up the apples with a wooden spoon. At the other end of the spectrum, for a smooth applesauce you can pass it through a foodmill. I prefer mine somewhere in the middle so I use a potato masher to break up the apples. Serve warm or chilled.