October 7, 2010
When Life Gives You Apples, Make Apple Cider!
You may have seen my television show recently when Joey Kola and I pressed apples for cider. This was actually the idea of my sister, Laura and my tech guru, Eliad, when they saw just how abundant the apple crop was this year at my farm. Eliad found a really great press from Happy Valley Cider Presses in Paola, Kansas. It’s interesting to note that approximately 30 to 40 apples will yield one gallon of cider. The apples you use needn’t be flawless, but they should be free of spoilage, which would cause the juice to ferment too rapidly. To pasteurize the cider before drinking, you simply heat it to 160-degrees for about 6 to 8 seconds. After pasteurization, cider can be frozen for longer storage. This past weekend, I had a lovely visit with my good friend, John Cuti and his family and of course, we made cider!
1 I had the cider press set up right outside the back door. We had a large assortment of apples washed and ready for pressing.
2 Sarah with Cate and Eli all ready to start grinding the apples.
3 The apples that grow on my farm are excellent for eating, baking, and for making cider.
4 Cate was really enjoying herself, but where is your shoe, darling?
5 Stephen, Sarah's father took a turn at grinding.
6 Eli was fascinated as whole apples were placed in the hopper and then fell into the wooden tub beneath all ground up.
7 Once full of chopped apples, the tub is positioned beneath the press screw, which applies pressure to the wooden press-disc. The mesh liner filters the juice.
8 Turning the screw takes a good deal strength. Fortunately, Pete Sherpa was working that day.
9 Pete facilitated the process by using this piece of wood, gaining better leverage.
10 As the pulp is pressed, the sweet cider flows out, filling a bucket beneath.
11 Eli loved the delicious cider and was so happy to learn how it's made.