~This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Amanda, the lucky winner!
There is a shop in Wichita called The Spice Merchant that, until recently, I had never ventured into. Now that I have, I’m slightly dismayed that it took me so long, but I’m very happy that I now have access to premium spices & products that I have been trying to find for years! I snapped up some Vietnamese cinnamon that was so fragrant, it almost smelled hot like cinnamon oil. I added whole nutmegs to my basket, saffron, vanilla beans, smoked paprika, fenugreek…I couldn’t stop marveling at all the things they had that I previously could only find online.
When I got home, I got to work making applesauce with 6 pounds of the apples a friend gave me from her tree. I decided I had to add some of my newly purchased spices and the end result was the best applesauce I’ve ever had! I usually despise applesauce except as an ingredient in baked goods, but I found this fancy stuff so tasty that I’m actually eating the last of it as I type this post–all six pounds gone!
*Moment of silence to observe the dearly departed fancy applesauce.*
To celebrate my first blogoversary, I purchased more of the same ingredients I used in the applesauce to give away to you! If you like to bake, these will come in really handy this holiday season.
To enter to win 2 ounces of Vietnamese cinnamon, 4 Tahitian Papua New Guinea vanilla beans, and 8 whole nutmegs, simply leave a comment on this post. I will draw a winner from the comments using Random.org on Black Friday.
Printable recipe with picture
6 pounds apples
2/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons Vietnamese cinnamon
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 vanilla bean
1 cup apple cider
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Peel, core and slice the apples. Put in an extra-large bowl. In a small bowl, mix the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean and stir into the sugar mixture. Pour over the apples and mix until coated. Dump into a 6-quart crockpot. Combine the apple cider and lemon juice and pour over the apples. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours; mash with a potato masher (will be chunky—to make smooth use a blender) and add additional sugar and spices to taste.
Recipe by Veronica Miller
Linked with Around My Family Table for BSI: vanilla
We never eat jarred applesauce anymore. I will have tro find some of this cinnamon.. how much did you pay for the nutmeg?
The spices seem to be pretty reasonable in the Spice Merchant. I paid $1.50 for the bag of nutmegs. That’s a good price, right?
That’s not bad at all . I have seen them really high. I love the smell of fresh nutmeg, don’t you?
Yes! I’ve been wanting to experience it for soooooo long but I just couldn’t bring myself to buy it online and pay for shipping. I’m so glad I finally went to the most obvious local place to find them. Duh!
I have got too make this for my applesauce cake that i make at christmas and just too eat…I can sit and eat applesauce by the jar lol i’m bad…
Oh boy, I think any baked good using this applesauce in place of regular would really be improved! Well, at least you don’t eat fudge sauce by the jar–that would be worse! At least applesauce is healthy, right?
Yes you are Penny ;) I love ya!
Your description of the Vietnamese cinnamon makes it sound heavenly. I can smell it already!
I do have a quick question. When a recipe, such as this one, calls for use of a vanilla bean, how does one know how large of a bean to use? I have avoided recipes with vanilla beans in the ingredients as I could never figure out the bean question.
My daughter-in-law in Portland, Stephanie, told me about your blog in August and I’ve been enjoying it ever since. Guess I should have written earlier to tell you that I appreciate what you are doing and your enthusiasm… and humor! :-) Thank you!!!
I really don’t think it matters what size bean you use! I can’t imagine your end product suffering from too much vanilla but if your bean is tiny, you may have to use two. No need to steer clear of those recipes, just use your judgment and if possible, taste what you’re making and adjust as necessary. Thank you so much for following my blog and letting me know how you found me–I love hearing from my readers!
Hope I win! I can never afford such fancy products.
katherinedibello (at) gmail (dot) com
I LOVE making homemade applesauce! I’ve never used a vanilla bean though! That would be new! Thanks!!
This sounds sooooo yummy – I can not wait to try it.
Thanks for your willingness to share :)
I have never used a vanilla bean – but am so willing to try. All of my friends think I am a great cook – I give you a lot of that credit as they love your dishes.
I am so thankful for you
Thank you so much for the feedback! You are so sweet and I’m delighted to have you as a reader.
Just wanted to say Hi !!!!!!! I recently found your blog and have really enjoyed trying several of your recipes. I do love the general converasation and tips that you throw in. Wishing you another year of blog happiness, keep them coming because I do enjoy it.
Squee! You have tried my recipes? That makes me so happy. Thanks for the feedback!
I AM SO EXCITED YOU FOUND A GOOD SPICE SHOP! Let me know if you have any questions or want to “spice up” your meals and dont know where to start!
Love the Spice Merchant! This applesauce looks fabulous. Can’t wait to try the recipe.
It looks so good. Can not wait to try
O MY CUPCAKES! HOW GR8 ALSO IN A CUPCAKE BATTER. NEVER HAD VIETNAMESE CINNAMON, YUMMY, AND PERFECT FOR THE HOLIDAYS. BLESSINGS TO ALL
Okay, I am in! May the random number generator show favor to me! :-)
This recipe is really awesome!! I’ve been looking forever for an excellent applesauce recipe and …… THIS IS IT!!
I just wonder if I could use this for things I substitute butter/oil for (like pancakes)? I think probably so.
I think so! It would give more flavor than plain applesauce, so you’d want to make sure that whatever you’re adding it to wouldn’t suffer from the addition of spicy cinnamon. It might taste a little strange in chocolate cake, for instance. Or maybe it would be incredible!
Let me try my luck for the 3rd time…lol! The cinnamon sounds great. I still have apples from all the trees in my yard. I can do apple pie so much and then the deer get them…ha!
What a delicious applesauce, Veronica! The spices sound wonderful. I was absolutely beside myself with happiness when a Penzey’s Spices opened up in my area. I could spend all day in that store! :)
Vietnamese cinnamon sounds like a lot of fun!
Pick meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! :)
My fingers and toes are crossed I win this giveaway! I would love to try that Vietnamese cinnamon…it sounds amazing!
Your sauce looks great. I would have devoured the whole pot :)
That is some fancy applesauce. I wonder if my son would enjoy that? I’d probably have to use a blender. It’s either whole foods or puree for that little guy. Everything in between is questionable to him.
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YUM! Can’t wait to try your applesauce. Fresh spices make such a big difference in our cooking & baking.
Thanks for joining my vanilla theme this week. It ended up being a great week with all sorts of wonderful recipes….sweet and savory!
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