Yesterday, with the help of some wonderful friends, I turned the 33 lbs of apples I picked last weekend into 22 pints of applesauce.
I use a slow, but easy, method. First you cut and peel apples (I like to cut them into fourths, core them, then cut them into eighths and peel them... but it doesn't really matter as long as the cores and peels are gone). Then I load up a crock pot with as many apple pieces as I can fit. I borrowed two crock pots so I had three total to work with.
It's good to write yourself a note so you remember when to check on them.
Add some spices (and maybe sugar, depending on your taste buds... I didn't add any sugar this time and my applesauce is a little tart, but I like it that way), and turn the crock pot on high for about 3-4 hours.
Then give it a stir, spoon into mason jars and process in a water bath canner for 20 minutes. Simple as... applesauce. =)
I started the first crock pot at 10am, and finished processing the last jars at 8pm. Using slow cookers does slow things down, but I find it makes the process more relaxed (no need to monitor the apples while they cook, and if you cook it a little longer than you intended it's okay).
All in all it was a great way to spend a very rainy Seattle Saturday.