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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Homemade Apple Cider


The key to successful cider is in the apples. Choose high sugar "cold weather" apples.
Think - thicker skin better apples. Avoid thin skin apples like Macintosh.
For tart cider - choose tart apples like granny smith
Sweet cider - choose apples like golden delicious & honey crisp!

I like a well rounded cider so I recommend using a mix of Red & Golden delicious, Jonagold, Granny smith, Honey crisp & Gala.

You'll need 8 to 10 large apples.
Chop & cut out core & seeds (but leave the skin on)

If you have a juicer - lucky YOU...just push the apple pieces thru & you're ready to pasteurize your cider.

OK..for everyone else... puree those apple pieces in a food processor or blender.
Place a wire mesh strainer or a colander lined with double thick cheesecloth over a deep bowl or pitcher.

Pour the apple mash into the strainer and leave to drain. Once the juice stops flowing into the bowl or pitcher gently press the mash against the strainer or twist up the cheesecloth around the mash & squeeze the rest of the juices.

You can restrain the cider again if you like - but I love it with all the nutritious pulp.

Pasteurize: this allows your cider to "keep" in the fridge for several weeks.

Heat up the cider on the stove until it reaches 160 degrees.
(I heat the cider on low until it barely begins to simmer & steam is rolling of the top)

You can serve this as is or add some spices. I create my own mulling spices, but you can add 2 whole cloves, 1 allspice and a cinnamon stick to the simmering mix and strain before serving or create your own spice mix.