A rich caramel sauce adds creamy sweetness to standard apple butter; spread it on toast, use it to fill pastries, or just eat it with a spoon. This recipe comes to us from cookbook author Karen Solomon, who developed it for our Preserve the Season series.
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Peel and core apples; cut them into eighths. Toss with oil and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Roast for 1½ hours, until golden; set aside. When apples are cool enough to handle, place in the bowl of a food processor and purée slightly; set aside.
2. In a 4-qt. saucepan over high heat, combine granulated sugar and ½ cup water. Cook without stirring, 7–9 minutes, or until a candy thermometer reads 385°. When it starts to caramelize, swirl the pan gently for even color. Slowly whisk in cream, then butter. Lower heat to medium and whisk until thick, about 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and whisk in brown sugar. With the motor of the food processor running, stream caramel into bowl with apples and purée until slightly smooth. Add lemon juice, vanilla, and salt and mix until combined.