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One of the pleasures of this time of year is squirreling away all sorts of goodies for the coming year. I’ve been making Spiced Apple Butter for a couple of years ever since it was recommended by my Twitter mate Karen Thorne. It’s great on toast or warm brioche. I’ve even been known to add a spoonful to rice pudding or porridge.

Make it with whatever apples you have to hand but a mix of cookers, eaters and crab apples gives the best results.

500ml strong dry cider

Ikg mixed apples in season, peeled, cored & sliced

Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

700g granulated sugar

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground cloves

Put cider in preserving pan and boil till it is reduced by half. Add the apples, lemon juice and rind. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes, then cook uncovered for 20-30 minutes till the apples are very soft. Leave mixture to cool. Puree with a stick blender, then add 275g sugar for every 600ml of puree. Stir in cinammon and cloves.

Heat gently till all sugar dissolved then bring to the boil for about 20 minutes, stirring regularly until the mixture forms a thick puree and holds its shape when put on a cold plate.

Spoon into warm sterilised jars and store in cool dark place.