Making Apple Cider
Apple cider is one of the delightful treats generally enjoyed during the fall months. Of course, if you take the time to make plenty of cider during the fall when apples are freshest and most readily available you can freeze it and use it for recipes throughout the year. Apple cider makes great marinade for fish and meat, sauces and much more, and fall wouldn't be fall without enjoying some delightful hot spiced cider.
Making apple cider yourself is fairly simple. Some people enjoy have cider pressing parties, and making cider is often the most fun when you can use a cider press. However, if you don't have a cider press or just want to make some quick cider, you can use a blender or food processor instead of a press.
The first step in making apple cider is to choose your apples. The best way to make cider is to use apples picked freshly from your own trees. If you don't have apple trees you can visit a local apple orchard, or the farmers market. When those options don't work, you can always find apples at your local grocery store. You will undoubtedly notice that there are many different types of apples and each of these apples has a different flavor. These flavors will also be noticeable in your cider. You can choose your favorite type of apple or you can mix different types of apples. Whatever type of apples you decide to use, just make sure that you have enough to make plenty of apple cider.
Your next step is to very thoroughly wash all of your apples. Dirt and anything else that might be on your apple are not good additions to cider. When the apples are clean core them and cut them into quarters, but do not peel them. Put these quarters into your blender or food processor, and puree them. You want to have a fine puree of apple pulp when you are done.
Finish the cider by placing a cheese cloth over a large container and straining the pulp through the cheese cloth. This step will extract the juice from the larger bits of pulp. After you have allowed the juice to flow through the cheesecloth you will have some pulp leftover, squeeze any remaining juice out of this pulp, and then discard the pulp.
Once your cider is made you will want to bottle and store it. If you are worried about health risks you can pasteurize your cider. You can store your cider for longer amounts of time by freezing it. You can use your homemade cider to make all sorts of marinades, sauces and of course some homemade hot spiced cider.