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For many of us, our favorite memories of Fall include warm fires and apple cider. If you are fortunate enough to have an outdoor fireplace, fire pit, or fire feature beside which to sip your cider, then all the better! That is certainly where we prefer to gather friends & family! So, it is in that spirit, of gathering close fireside, that we share with you our Fireside Apple Cider Recipe:
Fireside Apple Cider
1) Sharp knife.
2) Apple corer (makes it easier but not mandatory)
3) Blender or a food processor
5) Container for storage- wider opening works best – like a pitcher.
Selecting Your Apples
Commercial apple cider is made from a variety of different apples. Red Delicious and Fuji make for a sweeter cider, Granny Smith and Macintosh are a bit more tart. Don’t be afraid to mix varieties when making your own ( or stick to your favorite kind). If you decide to combine varieties, try to get a mix of red, green and gold for maximum flavor. Your cider will taste best when its made from freshly picked apples. It's worth a visit to your local farmer's market to make sure you have fresh apples to choose from. Avoid battered and bruised apples and go for those that appear healthiest. You will need approx. 36 apples to make one gallon of apple cider.
Making Your Apple Cider
1) Wash all of the apples thoroughly even if you buy organic.
2) Core the apples – no corer? No problem! Slice the apples in half and carve out the center.
3) Slice apples into quarters and puree them peel and all in your blender or food processor.
4) Keep them whirling till they are finely ground – the finer the pulp, the more juice you are going to get in the next step!
5) Spread your cheesecloth over your container for storage and pour the pulp into the cloth. The cloth acts as a strainer and juice filters into your container – the pulp stays put. You will need to squeeze the cloth a few times to get all your juice.
6) If you like, now you can add spices: Cloves, nutmeg, lemon peel or a little ginger – all optional.
7) For hard cider add a little rum and brown sugar.
8) You can store covered in an air tight container for 7 days.
9) Heat & serve to your friends & family fireside with your choice of orange slices or cinnamon sticks for garnish.
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We hope you have an opportunity to enjoy some time this Fall, cider in hand, friends & family by the fire, Living Poolside!