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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Apple Cider Extravaganza 2010

I'm not sure why I didn't post ANYTHING about our first attempts at cider pressing two years ago...probably it had something to do with my mom entering the hospital that same day (10/12/08). But still...I posted pictures to Facebook...

This year we got a total of 21 gallons from 9 boxes of apples. I sent out an "interest" email in July to see who, if anyone, would be interested in participating. Then we planned pressing dates for October and invited everyone who had responded to the first email (I didn't want to bombard people with TOO many emails if they weren't interested at all). We had to cancel two of the three events because the apples just weren't ripening as fast as expected.

Last Saturday was the big day. We had like 20 people here helping with everything from washing, cutting, puree-ing, grinding in the garbage disposal, and the actual pressing.

We staged washing on the patio, cutting in the dining room, puree-ing in the kitchen (via an arsenal food processors), grinding in the garage,
and pressing in the garage. You can see we collected the cider in our juice jar with a spigot and then bottled the cider in clean milk jugs we've been saving since May (!). It worked out nicely, especially since a lot of the particulates in the cider were able to settle out at the bottom of the jar before filling the milk jugs.

Everyone worked SO hard! But I hope everyone was able to find some down/social time, too. I know Edward and Cassie made cheese, some folks played with the variety of kiddos we had running around, and we even BBQed up some tri tip and sausages for lunch (to add to the smorgasbord of delicious goodies people brought for our potluck).Overall, the house was kept pretty clean. Edward and I washed everything on the patio afterward because our big steel bowls and commercial-sized cutting boards would be difficult in the kitchen. (The dogs were kind enough to do the pre-wash for us!)We were losing motivation and energy after 7 boxes so the last two were done by more friends the next day. Mike and Sandrine make homebrew and wanted about 5 gallons to harden. So we let them have the remaining boxes and full use of our house and cider stuff. (Our family went out to sushi while Eddie stayed home with the sitter...apparently Eddie "helped" Sandrine by taking a bunch of the washed apples out of the bucket.)

That night I finally mopped the house and got everything back into order.

Most folks took home a gallon or two of cider, pretreated with Campden tablets (they produce sulfur dioxide in the juice, which kills most harmful bacteria and yeast). Ours were put into the freezer so we can take our time drinking them or maybe hardening them later with added yeast. We'll see.

Dave is hoping we'll get another 4 boxes of apples by Halloween we might do another small pressing then. But again, we'll see...

1 comment:

Kait said...

I wish I lived closer...I so would have wanted to do that with you.