September 11, 2014

Art on hold for harvest - HARD APPLE CIDER

It may seem like I have been laying low since my last course ended at ACAD, but I have been knee deep in projects. The one I'm featuring here is HARD APPLE CIDER. 
I needed about 100 lbs. of apples to fill the required volume needed for my primary fermented.
We shook the tree over tarps to collect the two different types of apples on my neighbours 100+year old trees.

I filled multiple buckets and cleaned the apples. Some were the larger type which were a lot easier to process that the many tiny crab apples I had to clean and core.

I had my little system going and just sat myself down and chopped while watching Netflix. Doing this by hand is slow going, using a press would be much better but I didn't have one and we had to deal with these apples before the snow hit the next day.

And that is the real impetus behind this emergency harvest.  It created a lot of compostable materials (left bucket).

Once the apples are cleaned, cored and chopped I put them into the juicer and slowly but surely I gather it cup by cup and store it in a large stainless steel container in the fridge.

All these leftover bits and waste from the juicing bits found a happy home in my compost.

Like the energizer bunny, I keep going and going, I think the time is worth putting into it, by the time the final cider is done, I know I'll be happy.

later on I hit the wall, I'm sick of crab apples, but I have to keep going. "Dig deep Bunny."

With 23 Litres ready I filter the juice further by pouring it thru a strainer into a sterilized primary fermenter(bucket).
I have what I need to make the cider. I let it sit with half a teaspoon of Potassium Metabisulfite(K2S2O5) as a sterilant to kill any natural occurring wild yeasts, bacteria or fungi that may have come in with the harvested fruit. Then I add cinnamon, mace, allspice berries, french oak, lemon, brown and white sugar and a bit of dextrose and give it a good stir.  The next stage is I measure the specific gravity and put the cider yeast into the primary, now we wait for the yeasts to do their job.

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