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Monday, November 15, 2010

November Cider

I don't think we've EVER made cider in November before.  Late September, yes- when the hornets are getting into the buckets, mid-October when the weather is perfect, and late October when the wind is biting and howling and snow is flying...but November?  Unheard of.
In fact, this year most of the apples dropped off the trees early.  They hit the ground and the deer ate them (which deer do-they feel it is their fundamental job in life).

So, if we were going to do cider this year it would have been in mid-October.  But, since there were no apples our friends with whom we normally press cider didn't do it this year.

Confused?  Well.  We have two Wolf River apple trees that did manage to retain their apples.  They are HUGE apples which I love for making pies (because I really dislike peeling apples).  Will went out and picked ALL of the apples off the trees and stored them in the garage. Nine boxes.  We made apples pies one weekend...ten of them.  That didn't make a dent in one of the boxes.  The sheep were happy in the knowledge that they were indeed going to be having a feast.
One day last week Dorothy came by and we traded milk for eggs.  We pawned off half a box of apples on her.  She asked why we had so many in our garage and we told her that our cider making party fell through for lack of apples on our friends part.  Dorothy said "you can borrow our press!" and she and Wendell dropped it off a couple of days later.  I love having such good friends...
The cool thing about Dorothy's press is it has TWO press buckets!  You can be grinding apples at the same time as pressing them.  It goes FAST!
We ground and pressed and strained ten and a half gallons of cider last weekend.  It tasted pretty good even only with one type of apple.  We generally like to use as many as we can, but beggars cannot be choosers, and in this case it certainly didn't matter.
Dorothy got a couple of gallons of cider and an apple pie as repayment...but it is hard to put a price on and repay such a noble and good thing to do on a lovely, warm, November day.  We drank a gallon and put the rest in the freezer to pull out as treats around the holidays and all winter long.

And the woolies?  Well, they got the pomace.  Which they said wasn't nearly as nice as apples but it will do.


  1. That looks like so much fun. Another friend of ours made cider. Makes me want to find a press.

  2. Making cider is a beautiful process in November, especially when the weather is like late October without the hornets. Everyone helped. Pies in the freezer next to the honey brown liquid apples. Mmmm. What could be better?

  3. I meant late September....with no hornets...

  4. What fun. These kids are so lucky to experience so many natural processes! And did I mention so cute too!