Remove the stems from the apples, but do not core or peel. Coarsely chop the apples. Combine the apples, sugar, lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons of water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer, and cook until the apples are completely soft, about 20 minutes. Uncover, and continue to cook, stirring frequently to prevent scorching, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and pass the mixture through the fine-holed disc of a food mill. Discard the peels and seeds. Refrigerate if not using immediately.
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