As children move on from puréed baby food and start sharing the same meal as their parents, their boiled potatoes and vegetables are often prakked together with pan gravy and apple sauce. It makes for a sweet-and-salty taste and a mushy texture, and it is great for masking the more bitter tastes of traditional vegetables such as boerenkool (kale), spruitjes (Brussels sprouts) or zuurkool (pickled cabbage). Most children will consume the sweet applesauce with their warm dinner and consequently, many an adult will continue the tradition, whether it’s with homemade applesauce or store bought.
Children's menus at Dutch restaurants will invariably offer appelmoes on the side, and a very old-fashioned but oh-so-satisfying entrée to order is chicken with french fries and apple sauce. Kinderen Voor Kinderen, a Dutch children's choir, sang a very catchy tune about it: kip, patat en appelmoes. And it is a must of course that you dip your hot and salty French fry in the mayonnaise first, and then in the cold and sweet apple sauce. Don't knock it until you try it!
The weather is slowly cooling down and Fall is just around the corner. The apple trees are ready to share their bounty, so let's prepare some appelmoes! The sauce can be held in the fridge for a couple of days, frozen or canned. Please follow your local Extension office recommendations regarding canning procedures.
8 large apples (preferably a variety of flavors: tart, sweet etc)
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ cup water
Cinnamon stick, optional
Peel, core and chop the apples. Add with sugar and water to a saucepan with a heavy bottom and slowly bring up to a simmer. Cover and simmer the apples until done: leave it chunky or mash it slightly to create a finer texture. Taste and adjust the sweetness or the flavor of cinnamon as preferred.