- 3 medium McIntosh or Rome apples, halved and cored
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 gallons apple cider or juice, divided
- 2 medium navel oranges, halved and sliced
- 2 medium lemons, halved and sliced
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick (3 inches), halved
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- Preheat oven to 375°. Place apples in an 8-in.-square baking dish, cut side down. Pour water around apples. Bake, uncovered, 20-25 minutes or until tender. Cool slightly.
- When cool enough to handle, scoop out pulp from apples and place in a blender; discard apple peel. Add 1/2 cup cider to blender; cover and process until smooth.
- In a stockpot, combine remaining ingredients, apple puree and remaining cider. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes. If desired, discard citrus slices and cinnamon stick before serving.
- Freeze option: If making in advance, you can cover and freeze the uncooked pie for up to 3 months. To use the frozen pie, bake at 375 for 70 minutes. Yield: 42 servings (3/4 cup each).
Originally published as Christmas Wassail in Country Woman December/January 2008, p22
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