I recently had an opportunity to make a "fruit dish" to feed a group of 40 men. Being apple season here in apple country, I initially thought about baking pies, but to be completely honest, I didn't think the men who would be serving this meal (and none of whom are skilled in the kitchen) would be happy about having to cut 40 slices of pie. So I searched the internet for some sort of crustless apple pie-like recipe, which led me to this one for Slow Cooker Caramel Apples on a blog called Kate from Scratch. They're super yummy and were a big hit at the meal - thanks Kate!!
The original slow cooker recipe is listed below - my notes for multiplying the recipe and converting to cook in an 18-quart Roaster Oven will be listed below that.
Slow Cooker Caramelized Apples
8 cups diced baking apples (peeled and cored)
1 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 dash freshly grated nutmeg
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Put all the ingredient in a slow cooker and mix thoroughly.
Cover and cook on high until apples are tender, about 3 hours. The yummy salted-cinnamon-vanilla-caramel sauce that coats the apples will thicken slightly upon cooling. Cook uncovered for a thicker sauce.
Note: For my large version that will feed 40, quadruple the recipe and cook in an 18-quart electric roaster set to 300F for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally. I used a mix of apples - galas, golden delicious, golden supreme, and Nittany. Any apple that keeps it's shape during baking will work well.