I had to look all around the web for a sauce recipe that didn't use a food mill (although I still want one). I found a couple of recipes, but none of them was exactly right. By my third batch of applesauce, I had totally figured out one that work. I had wanted to make an applesauce that didn't need any sugar, but despite my work, the applesauce really didn't taste like anything, not even apples, until I added a bit of sugar. I'm sure it was the type of apples, tho, or that I didn't include the peels so your results may be different. Taste it before adding sugar.
for 3 quarts:
30 small to medium apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 large can frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed
1 juice can of water
3T lemon juice
3/4 c sugar (or to taste)
Add all ingredients but sugar to a large heavy pot. use a potato masher to mash/break the apple pieces. Bring to a simmer and continue to cook, mashing and stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes or so. Remove from heat and use an immersion blender to puree the sauce. Alternately, get a clean pan ready and puree in a food processor, putting the puree into the clean pan. After all is pureed, return to burner on medium heat. Taste, and add sugar as needed. Cook and stir another 5 minutes. Remove from heat, pack in hot jars and process 25 minutes in a boiling water bath.
I use mine for baking so I don't add cinnamon, but you can add freshly ground cinnamon during the last cooking stage if you like.
I did several batches and ended up finally with 10 quarts. It's pretty good and the boys are half way through their first jar. Happy canning! I still have 30 apples left that I'm going to put up as apple pie filling! YUM!