Friday, July 12, 2013
When you have access to a lot of apples, you may wonder what to do with all of them. Applesauce is yummy but you could make apple pies and freeze them if you have enough freezer space or you could make apple juice or apple cider. There is some debate on what the difference is. The type of apple juice you buy at the store is pasteurized and will not ferment. Apple cider, on the other hand, is not pasteurized and will ferment and eventually turn into hard cider with a little help. To make apple cider, you will need a cider press. These are actually beautiful machines that chop up the fruit and then press the juice out of the chopped up fruit.
Varieties of Apples to Use To make apple cider, you should start with the right apples. Some people recommend sticking with a combination of sweet apples like Yellow Delicious, Gala, Rome, Honeycrisp, Pink Lady, Fuji, and Red Delicious. Others say use one-third sweet, one-third bittersweet, and one-third sharp for the best tasting cider. Never use all the same variety of apple. If you’re on a farm, once you get your apples, pick out any bad ones and give them to the pigs; they will love them. Pour or place the apples in the hopper at the top of the press. Then, turn the big wheel or handle to chop up the apples and get them ready for pressing.
Making Juice and Cider Once you have enough apple pieces, you can fill up the tub with them and place the press-disc into the tub on top of the apples and attach the screw to the press-disc. The handle for the screw is at the top of the cider press. Turn the handle attached to the screw until you can’t turn it any more. Watch the yummy fresh apple juice come out of the bottom of the tray under the tub and into your catch bucket. If you have enough help, you can get an assembly line going and keep the tubs full and the juice constantly flowing. Straining the juice would be a good idea and then fill whatever containers you have set aside to store the cider in.
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