Blog Update!
For those of you not following me on Facebook, as of the Summer of 2019 I've moved to Central WA, to a tiny mountain town of less than 1,000 people.

I will be covering my exploits here in the Cascades, as I try to further reduce my impact on the environment. With the same attitude, just at a higher altitude!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Hard apple cider

Sweet apple ciderIn the latest of my hair-brained ideas, I have decided to try my hand at making hard apple cider this year. Now, I have to wholeheartedly blame Mother Earth News for this one, where a lot of my crazy ideas come from.

Perhaps I wasn't thinking too clearly when I was reading this at the hospital a few weeks ago, but I can't seem to get this project idea out of my head.

I plan on visiting Craven Farm at the end of the month with my son to pick up 5 gallons of fresh apple cider. Good lord, what am I getting myself into now?

Have any of you ever tried making hard cider? Any hints or tips?

I think my blog has turned into my begging for hints or recipes on my various shenanigans.


Deb G said...

No hints except for a good set of guidelines to check out. I'm making hard cider right now. It's the first time I've tried it. I started with apple cider that I made from my apples and it's been fermenting away for about 3 months now. I'm using the directions in "Wild Fermentation" by Sandor Ellix Katz (really like this book by the way). It's past time to rack it off and put it in a clean bottle to age some more. It's got a lot of sediment in it, but smells divine. The next thing I'm going to try is ginger beer or making my own vinegar.

denise said...

We are trying our first batch this year. We used 5 gallons - using the same book recipe from Wild Fermentation that deb listed. Yep, we are doing wild fermentation. We just racked ours into another container -- only 4.5 more months to go! :) Good luck!!

Anonymous said...

I made some last winter. It was an accident though. I was trying to make the Nourishing Traditions apple cider. It was quite bubbly and my hubby really liked it.


Anonymous said...

Having the equipment for making hard cider means you have the equipment for making beer and wine too... It's a slippery slope! (But a fun one!)

Anonymous said...

Ha, we were seduced by the same article! We've got a batch going right now. I bought my husband a wine-making kit for his birthday almost 2 years ago (he's made some good wine!), so we already had all the equipment. This is our first attempt at hard cider. We're looking forward to the results.

Greenpa said...

Just remember you have to keep AIR away from the fermentation process. sugar + yeasts+ No air = ethanol; sugar + yeasts+ air = vinegar.

Simple! Just like all the directions from Mother Earth News. Easy!

And of course, people spend their entire lives learning the critical details they kind of gloss over! Have fun, anyway. :-)

My favorite cider is the fresh stuff that is JUST starting to ferment; 98% of the sugar is still there, but it's just a little fizzy. You have to drink it quick though; there's no way to keep it in that state.

Anonymous said...

i thought "hard" cider was alcoholic?

Crunchy Chicken said...

jessica - yes, "hard" apple cider is fermented... the yeasts convert the sugars to alchohol. Or something like that. I plan on adding additional brown sugar and honey to increase the alcohol content.

Catherine said...

No tips for the cider, but we went to Craven farm a couple of weeks ago with a preschool class. It was lots of fun. They have a lot of good Halloween decorations. Be sure to wear galoshes or boots though even if it's warm. The mud is squooshy.

Hygd said...

I haven't had much success with making hard cider but cyser is great. It's a type of mead (honey drink) that uses cider instead of water.

I'd try doing cider again this year if I wasn't already making a bunch of beer and wine for holiday gifts.

Michelle Peacock said...

If you like Mother Earth News, you may also enjoy Backwoods Home Magazine. Lots of neat ideas for making your own--many things!

Riana Lagarde said...

I am making some apple cider vinegar from scratch this year. Its the same concept except that you let it have air. Yum. Its been three weeks already. I had so many apples, I had to do it and ACV is a great cure all for a lot of things.

ps I love your blog! I am doing the cloth wipes because of you! yipeee