Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Nothing says Fall like Apples and nothing says Apples like cider.
When I ordered my 6 1/2 bushels of apples I hadn't counted on cider apples (because Matt told me not to-for the record) but it just so happened that there was an extra six bushels unaccounted for, that I could nab very last-minute. 12 bushels of apples sat on my enclosed front porch for a week. But on Saturday, about 7 of those bushels were made into cider. My brother in law came also with another 5-6 bushels and Matt's parents brought apples enough for two gallons of cider.
It was a regular cider-making party!
Matt got an old incomplete fruit press a few years back and made the pieces necessary to get it working. (Oh the cleverness of him!) Unfortunately, we hadn't figured out a way to process the apples (crush them up a bit) BEFORE pressing them so our first attempts didn't work very well.
THIS year, however, a guy from Matt's work had a processor he let us borrow and it worked WONDERFULLY. (I won't hold the fact that it broke Mattie's finger against it.)
Here are few pictures from that day. I am limiting myself to a small few so as not to steal Matt's thunder on HIS blog (even though he only posts on that thing once a millennium).
But FIRST~ I thought it would be interesting to see how much the children learned about cider-making without actually ramming it down their throats. So I tested Corynn-on video. Here she is: explaining how it is done-and no there was no script. I think she did pretty good. Let this video serve as PROOF that as your children are working alongside you--they are learning just as well (if not better) than sitting behind a desk.
Go ahead, Ms. Corynn :
And now in picture form:
This is the "CRUNCHING MACHINE" to which she was referring. It crunches apples AND fingers equally well.
(Don't worry-the finger crunching came during clean-up. No fingers tainted the juice.)
(BTW~If I can't accomplish what I had in mind originally, I am TOTALLY using this for my MOTION shot.)
The crushed up apples are then put into the press-inside of my lovely bed sheet that is now ruined. :-( Oh well. Guess Mattie can't complain if I get a new set for us! winky wink
See that "barrel" type contraption. Matt built that. And since a girl has got a right to be proud, I might as well tell you...He also fashioned the wooden handle on top, (and not pictured) the holey bottom that allows the juice to escape and the wooden apple-pusher-downer that the big screw forces down. I am just as eloquent as my daughter, I think! :-)
With the twists of the handle, the juice starts a'flowin. Let go, let flow.
It's much more fun as a two person job. Actually, I should clarify. It is much more fun when it is a job two people (other than me) can do. I like being the photographer. It gets me out of all sorts of work.
And lookie here: YUM-O Liquid apples.
Let me tell you this stuff is so stinkin' good.
Of course, fresh cider is the best (in my opinion) but Matt prefers it when it is hard. The object for him, then, is to harden some off. (and by some I mean: most.) So in the carboys it goes.
It's amazing the different shades that were produced from the different varieties of apples. The vibrant red apples on the left produced the furthest carboy-and it looked more like GRAPE juice than apple!