My Cider Recipe

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Pr1me's Apple Cider

Stage 1
The easy way: use practically any Cider kit that makes about 20 liters of cider and do the usual add with hot water and stir

The hard way: Juice about 7 - 10kg of fresh apples, reduce it on the stove until it resembles a syrupy mess. You will
need to stir, constantly, or its gonna burn, even after you turn off the heat, keep stirring until its cooled a bit. If you dont know how to reduce
something on the stove, ask the missus ;-)

Once done, throw it into a container(s) with a bit of lemon juice stirred in and let it stand for 24 hours at room temp.

The tartness of the brew will depend on the apples you use, and that depends on season, however, there are other tricks ;-)
Keep in mind finding the tart acidic cider apples they use in england is like finding rocking horse shit. We will use other methods.

I recommend starting with a black rock cider kit, it isnt traditional, but its a shitload quicker and yields better results more often then not.
Also there is little difference between the kit contents and what we just did on the stove that took about 7 hours.

Stage 2
Now if you can only get ahold of johnnies or red delicious apples, your brew will be very sweet, granny smiths can add that tartness
but arent always available. If you do get stuck with the red apples only, you can add tartness to the brew by throwing in some
slightly unripe nectarines, you can tell this at the shop simply by the firmness. The harder the better and the more tartness they will add.

So you will need 2 kg of fruit at this point
A mixture of grannies, johnnies/reds are fine
If you want some extra tartness as said before, throw in 4 - 6 nectarines.
Also if you can afford the buggers, blueberries are also a nice touch to the brew, 2 or 3 punnets.

Alternatively Cloves & nutmeg are also a nice touch here, they give a mulled taste to the brew.

At this point quarter all your fruit, nectarines included, you can skin them if you so wish but i like to think the skins add something to the brew.
Basically just de-seed them and remove and stones and blemishes where you can from the fruit.

Throw these into a tupperware container with a good amount of lemon juice, give em a shake, and throw em in the fridge for 24 hours.

Stage 3 after 24 hours has elapsed, and a bit more if you have had a drink.
Rehydrate your yeast.

Stage 4
Throw the reduced puree(or kit) into the fermenter and add 3 or 4 sticks of cinamon(crushed into powder) and stir in with an equal amount of boiling water.
Stir it... stir some more, and keep stirring until the syrup and the water play nicely.

Here we can fiddle a bit more, I like to add about 2 liters of juice into the fermenter with the syrup. If you have made syrup(god help you) add 2 - 4 liters of
apple juice(no perservatives) regardless of what other juices you might add.

Usually at this point, i add some dark grape juice, about 2 liters worth. If you add multi-V you can convince yourself its healthy.
Remember that lemon juice you have been using to preserve the fruit in the fridge? Empty it into the fermenter to add some decent acidity to the brew.
Berri lemon squeeze is the best, get the big 500ml one.

Now stir.

Stage 6
Stir in 2kg of CSR Dark Brown sugar.

Stage 7
Now simply fill with water until you hit the 20 liter mark and give the whole wort a shake for a couple of minutes. Leave it until it cools
then do an OG reading.

Yeast goes in

Stage 9
Fruit from the fridge goes in. Try and make sure the yeast stays in the wash and not on the fruit too much.

Stage 10
Lock and load! Wait 2 weeks check your FG and once its stabilized, pull out the floating fruit with a set of tongs(the apples taste good with ice cream),
rack and sieve the brew.

While fermenting you might want to give it a quick turn and jerk to make sure the apples bob around and dont collect too much of
the yeast on the side facing the air every now and then.

Your apples and nectarines will turn brown, the nectarines will actually dissolve into the brew if left longer then two weeks.
The blueberries are likely to dissolve but this is not always the case.
There will be floaties, i suggest sieving through a stocking to remove the majority of the gribbly bits including the cloves if you added any.

The result is a relatively sweet, almost mead like cider, which I bottle still, but you might want to try fizzy if you like
dem bubbles.

good post pr1me, just the thing i've been wanting to try!!
What yeast do you use?

I'm interested in making a cider. We have an orchard up in the hills from here that sells windfall apples cheap. Nice healthy fruit, just ugly skin.
SWMBO loves her strongbow dry. I've tried a few different cider kits but they're all too sweet.

I've heard that using a quality champagne yeast , one that can tolerate a higher alcohol content, will work through a lot of the residual sweetness creating a dry cider.

Is it the yeast that controls sweet / dry, or is it the wort ingredients, or a combination?

has anyone tried to clone a strongbow dry?

I'd say its a combination of the original fermentables and the attenuation characteristics of the yeast. Same as beer. Champagne yeast seems a reasonable choice. I wonder what the hardcore cider brewers use? Is there are "cider" yeast?


You can get an enzyme from your hbd, used to make dry beers and cider, 1/2 a pack in the ferment will give you a draught cider and the full pack will give you a very dry cider, mine fermented below 1.000 i think it went down to 996, and thats dry. :blink:

I have used a pinot noir yeast, champagne, liquid sweet cider/mead yeasts at various times.

I friend of mine has also use a dry liquid cider yeast and a white labs cider yeast. These and the champagne will make the most dry. Also, they leave the least amount of body in the cider - ferment right down.

Hope this helps.
champagne yeast is fine for a batch from scratch(best if you want a sparkling cider)
when i did a modified kit though, i just used the provided yeast, and potted still.
just remembered, traditionally some cider recipes call for normal bakers yeast to go into the brew, and also a piece of red meat, which provides nutrients to the yeast. At the end of the brew, the meat should be gone, or mostly dissolved into the brew.

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