I think this recipe deserves 5 stars just for the sheer genius of employing the slow cooker - having spent many an afternoon babysitting a pot of apple butter to make sure it didn't burn or splatter my stovetop and kitchen counter, it was *so* nice to be able to load the apples into the slow cooker, set it on low or warm, check on it and stir it occasionally, and know I could leave it for a few hours on warm if I wasn't ready to can it yet. The slow cooker and my hand-crank apple peeler/corer/slicer gizmo have made it super-easy to turn my backyard apples into yummy apple butter.
Here's what I did: peeled/cored/sliced enough apples to fill my cooker (probably about 5 lbs), added 2 c sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon, and set cooker on "warm" overnight. In the morning, checked on it, stirred it, turned heat up to "low", kept it simmering, tasted to see if it needed more sugar, turned it back to "warm" when I had to leave the house for a couple hours, came back, alternated heat settings between "warm" and "low" and stirred occasionally until it looked ready to puree with the immersion blender, then let it continue simmering with lid off, stirring occasionally, until it looked thick enough for canning. And by this time the apples have concentrated down enough that the splashes from the thick bubbling apple butter are contained within the walls of the slow cooker.
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I think this recipe deserves 5 stars just for the sheer genius of employing the slow cooker -...