What’s For Dinner?
Apple Butter With Red Hots
(First star is lowest, fourth star is highest)
"Help me locate a recipe for homemade apple butter containing Red Hots cinnamon candy. My grandmother, [who made] the best apple butter ever, passed away before I was old enough to appreciate her culinary talents. All I know for sure is her recipe contained Red Hots," wrote Dawn Holcomb of Jefferson to the Food Goddess, an AJC Food feature in which readers write in hoping to find lost favorite recipes.
When Harriet Moore of Atlanta sent in a recipe, the goddess knew it was the one that would work best for her and her busy fellow multitaskers. She tweaked the recipe --- since a little apple butter goes a long way and things like splatters and splashes are avoided when there's less cooking at once. The goddess still would like to credit the original recipe, from the "Fix-It and Forget-It Cookbook" by Dawn J. Ranck (Good Books, $23.95). Look for Red Hots at party supply stores with candy counters (like Party City) or use cinnamon candies from the baking and decorating section of the supermarket.
Because every slow cooker produces slightly different heat, adjust the cooking time as needed. You can leave the sauce unattended on high heat for the first couple of hours, but as it continues to cook, it needs to be stirred more frequently. Switch to low and cook longer if you are going out.
Hands on time: 5 minutes Total time: 10 hours Serves: 32 1 tablespoon servings
1 (50-ounce) jar unsweetened applesauce
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 heaping teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 (0.8-ounce) packages or 3 tablespoons Red Hots