• Asher Cusack

Pink Lady, Rose & Vanilla Applesauce

A great addition to any autumnal dessert this fall. Sweet and comforting, fruity and floral.


As autumn starts to show it's face, I always become very aware of how truly incredible this place is that I live in. I've been here 6 years now and the gorgeous, bountiful woodlands and creeks never cease to take my breath away on a crisp sunny morning. Many people in our neighbour hood have gnarled and wind-bent fruit trees growing in prominent place in front of their homes, where they've been for generations. The apples and plums begin to ripen and smell delicious, but inevitably weeks later the streets are lined with brown and mushy discarded fruit. I always think it's such a shame that people don't find a use for the food they're growing, but at least it keeps the squirrels and deer happy!

This week someone on our street had the bright idea to place a basket of the rip fruit in front of their tree, with a sign encouraging people to take and use it. Since then, a couple more homes have followed suit. I really hope this becomes a tradition each year, as I've picked up some of the most delicious pink apples I've ever tasted, and some firm and fragrant quince to experiment with. This global tragedy does seem to have fostered something of a firmer sense of local community here, and I'm grateful for that small silver lining.


This recipe is actually my first ever applesauce! It’s not so popular in the UK but I’m always seeing US bloggers making it and I wanted to have a go. Turns out it’s easier and more delicious than I imagined! Usually when I have apples on hand I tend to fall back on the classic cinnamon or caramel pairing, but since these pink ladies were so wonderfully floral and fragrant, I decided to lean in to that. The result was beyond good, but if you’ve got different apples on hand, feel free to play around with other flavouring agents - cinnamon, ginger, or chai spices would all work in place of vanilla and rose. you could even sneak in a cap of bourbon!


Pink Lady Applesauce vegan, gluten free.


  • 8 large pink lady apples

  • ⅓-½ cup maple syrup or other liquid sweetener

  • 1 tablespoon rose water

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

  • lemon juice to taste

Serving suggestions:

Use to top oatmeal/porridge. Roll up in pizza dough, cut slices and bake cinnamon roll style. Smear on toast. Marble through softened vanilla or coconut ice cream and refreeze.


  1. Cook the apples over a medium low heat with a splash of water, covered, until softened.

  2. Remove the lid, increase the heat to medium and add the maple syrup.

  3. Cook until thick, mashing the apples as you go.

  4. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients, adjusting lemon and salt to taste.

  5. Cool completely then store in the fridge. It will keep for at least a week in the fridge or up to 3 months in the freezer.


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