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- Part 2 -
Filtering The Mash and Fine Tuning
The mash that has worked it's way through the colender / strainer operation now needs to be filtered. This is where we get the juice as the bonus.
Of course, if it was the filtered juice you were after in the first place then the sauce would be the bonus.
Get your muslin ready by rinsing it in cold water to get it really good and wet. You DO NOT want to try filtering by starting with a dry cloth. Instead of filtering it will sop up a whole bunch of the juices whereas a very wet cloth won't sop anything up since it is already sopping wet.
In any case, lay a piece of wet muslin down into the strainer and dump the mash into the depression and let the juice filter through.
All that fine pulp and juice that made it through the colender now needs to be filtered through muslin to remove some of the juices.
If you don't get rid of some of the juice you will end up with a very runny applesauce.
Since we want the sauce to be like applesauce should be, that is, a bit on the runny side, we want natural filtering to take place so we will not be forcing the liquid from the mash by lifting and squeezing.
We will however need the muslin to be fresh under the mash. As the filtering takes place the muslin fibers will clog and act as a dam not allowing any more juices through.
You will need to work the muslin cloth by sidling it a bit at a time from under the mash so that the mash always has a bit of new muslin to allow filtering.
You should do small portions of mash at a time and have a few pieces of muslin at your disposal.
As you work the muslin slowly from under the mash, so that more fresh areas of muslin are always under the mash,
you will notice that the muslin that is lifted aside will have applesauce adhering to it.
That sauce is what we want. Use a spoon to scoop the sauce from the cloth and put into a container.
As you sidle the muslin the sauce will be adhering to it.
That is what we are after so you need to spoon it off the cloth and into a bowl of some sort and dump the juice into another container. Each time you do a little filtering, as described above, you will end up with some crabapple juice and some crabapple sauce like shown below.
Working with small portions of mash and muslin you will end up with portions of juice and sauce.
Keep working those portions until all the juice and all the sauce has been accumulated.
When you are all done with the filtering and have all your sauce in one place it is time to fine tune the sauce. The consistency may not be the way you want it. Maybe it's too runny or too dry.
If too runny, try another piece of muslin and filter some more juice from it.
If too dry, add a bit of juice from the bowl where you saved the juice.
Once the consistency is just the way you want it add the sweetener of your choice. Add a little sweetener at a time until it is the way you like it.
You can't really make a blanket statement about adding a certain amount of sugar or other sweetener because it all depends on how tart the crabapples are that you started with and what your sweetness preference is.
Some people use sugar some Splenda and some use something altogether different.
The amount of sweetener to add varies because not all crabapples have the same tartness, not all sweeteners are equal and people have different preferences.
Add a little at a time until you get it where you want it.
When all done the crabapple sauce will look close to what I have pictured below.
Crabapple sauce is finished. The liquidity has been adjusted and sweetness is just the way I want it.
The juice you rendered, which this time is a bonus product, can be made into jelly, wine, crabapple jack, syrup and/or pectin.
Or, if you don't have enough juice with this one little project, use it as an addition to another project or freeze it for later use.
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