Thursday, 20 September 2012

Apple Juice, Cider and Happy Chickens

 
 
The big old apple tree is chucking apples at us at a rate of knots.  We gather the windfalls every day, leaving a few for the passing deer that seem to like to take a bite as they wander through our land.  I feel a bit guilty for fencing off all the veggie beds (but not guilty enough that I would take the fences down just yet!!) so an apple or two will keep them going as they pass on their way to the woods and wilder pickings.
 
The others we fetch back to the house and leave in big baskets in the utility room until we have enough for a pressing session.  Then it's all hands to the deck (I am married to a sailor you know!) for a chopping and squishing time.
 
 
 
My main role is to blitz the quartered apples in the food processor, this makes for a much quicker and juicier press.  Time consuming but easy to do.
 
 
 
Lovely Hubby manfully mans the press, turning it tighter and tighter until all the juice pours out in a very satisfying trickle.  His bucket fills up with lovely brown apple juice and the smell is delicious.
 
 
 
It's nice to see a man happy in his work.
 
 
 
 
And so he should be, we've now got three demi-johns of cider on the go and around eight bottles of pure apple juice.  Delightfully tasty chilled and then diluted with sparkling water.  A glass each evening with our tea makes all the hard sticky work more than worthwhile.
 
And the squished apples don't go to waste either the chickens absolutely love them and you can't beat a happy chicken!!
 
Sue xx

18 comments:

  1. I bet the smell is wonderful :) Let us know how strong that cider is - and be careful ;)

    I've a friend who does a lot of cider making and his stuff varies from ok to lethal (ie get drunk just sniffing it!!).

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    1. I'll let you know........ if I survive!!

      The apple juice itself is really strong, we have to dilute it with lots of water.

      Sue xx

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  2. so does the cider ferment on its' own, or do you add some yeast to it? I'm positively jealous! We used to brew our own beer before we had children, and that was a lot of fun. We don't any more since my husband learned that he is allergic to beer.

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    1. Lovely Hubby does all the technical stuff, I just chop and blitz, but yes, he does add yeast and some sugar to it.

      Your poor husband....what a thing to be allergic to...life is so unfair!

      Sue xx

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  3. Tee Hee do your chickens get drunk? I would love to have a go at cider making one day, it looks great fun.

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    1. There was a bit of staggering to bed that night.....and they all slept very well.

      Sue xx

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  4. Sue

    We have quite a lot of seed left from our time at the garden, I am not too sure what is there but you are very welcome to them, I could parcel them up and send them to you, any you do not want or are too far out of date you can sort out and give away to someone else what you do not want.

    I could do with some of those apples to freeze for pies in the winter!!

    You can send me your addy in a comment and I will not publish it.

    Let me know,

    Anne
    Silver sewer.

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    1. Thank you Anne, that's absolutely lovely of you, I'll leave you a comment now.

      Sue xx

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  5. The cider looks amazing! I haven't had an opportunity to make any yet, but looking forward to doing it in the next couple of weeks! I always give the damaged, fallen apples to the chickens - they love trying to get the bugs out!

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  6. I love your press! We are very guilty of not making as much use of our apples as we should. I'd love to try this!
    Our ducks love the windfall apples - sometimes I think they do get a wee bit drunk!

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  7. Oh yum I do love cider. It all looks like a very organised production line at your house. Shame you don't live near enough for me to take a sip!

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  8. Glad the chickens get a little treat too! lol

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  9. A glass of cider while watching happy chooks-thats's the life

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  10. Sounds like a win-win idea, the windfalls get used, you get something nice to drink, the chickens get a feed.

    Like my lentil soup, the ham shank gets used for dinner then cold for sandwiches, a big pan of lentil soup from the stock with any oldish root veg added, dog gets the bones, cat gets the fat, no waste, everybody's happy.

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    Replies
    1. It is a nice feeling isn't it when every bit of somethng gets used.

      Sue xx

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  11. Sue what make is your press? Is it a Vigo one?

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    1. Not sure of the make I can't find a label on it. We got it from here, it is the 6ltr one I think.

      http://www.ascott-dairy.co.uk/acatalog/Fruit_Press_Kits.html

      Sue xx

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