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How To Make Apple Cider

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How To Make Apple Cider

If you’ve always wanted to learn how to make apple cider, the process can range from extremely easy to much more labor intensive.

Historically speaking, people once used the cider press, a non-mechanical device, to squeeze out the juice from apples – and they would just call that apple cider. From there, employers could pay their employees with it, and pay rent or other obligations.

We’ve come a long way since the days apple cider was used as a form of commerce. Apple cider also has a different meaning today: it’s a spiced apple drink – not just apple juice.

You can find apple cider ready-made at the store, or you can create your own – either using purchased apple juice or, for a more natural drink, fresh apples.

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However you make it, apple cider is the perfect drink for autumn and for using all those ripened apples!

Apple Cider: The Super Easy Way
apple cider

    If you want to make your cider a little more special and don’t want to just get the store-bought version, follow this recipe.

    What You’ll Need: 

    • apple juice – 1 gallon
    • some cheesecloth (enough to make a little “bag of spices”)
    • spices – cinnamon, cloves (whole or ground), ginger, nutmeg
    • orange peel from one orange
    • 1/3 cup brown sugar (optional)
    • cinnamon stick (optional)

    What To Do:

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    1. Pour the apple juice into a large pan. Turn your stove on to medium-low heat.

    make apple cider

      As the apple juice is heating, prepare the cheesecloth by laying it out and then putting 1-2 teaspoons each of cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg on the cloth. Add the orange peel, and 3-4 whole cloves or 1 teaspoon ground cloves. Using the corners of the cloth, tie it into a small bag.

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      apple cider cinnamon nutmeg ginger orange cloves

         

        Place the cheesecloth bag into the cider. Add the brown sugar at this time, if desired. Stir occasionally. You’ll see the spices and sugar dissolving into the apple juice.

        apple juice and cider with spices

          Once the mixture is hot (20-30 minutes), use a slotted spoon to take out the cheesecloth bag. Set aside and let cool. Compost the orange peel and spices.

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          Ladle the cider into mugs and serve with a cinnamon stick. You’ll want to be sure to consume all of the cider within one week of making it.

          Make Apple Cider Using Fresh Apples

          If you want to skip the grocery store altogether and make cider from scratch, you’ll need a few on-hand kitchen items, and a little time.

          What You’ll Need:

          • 36 apples, preferably a mix of red and green varieties, washed thoroughly (Red Delicious and Granny Smith are good bets)
          • apple corer (nice to have, but not necessary if you don’t already have one)
          • blender
          • cheesecloth
          • spices – cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves
          • orange or lemon peel
          • cinnamon sticks (optional)
          • whipped cream (optional)

          What To Do:

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          1. Core the apples. You can either do this by using an apple corer or cutting each apple in half and scooping out the center (seeds and all) with a knife.
          2. Quarter the apples so they will fit more easily in the blender.
          3. Place the apples in a blender and puree them (both peel and pulp). You’ll probably have to do this in batches to accommodate all the apples.
          4. Place the cheesecloth over a bowl, and pour the apple puree with its juice over the cloth. Squeeze the pulp to extract more juice.
          5. Lift out the cheesecloth with the pulp and you’re left with the juice.
          6. You can now drink as-is or heat the juice over medium-low heat. Then add the spices of your choice, by the teaspoonful, until you’re satisfied with the taste. Add either the orange or lemon peel, depending on your preferences.
          7. Strain out the spices once the cider is hot, but not boiling. You can use cheesecloth and strain the cider into a bowl once again, or skim off the spices and orange or lemon peel with a large spoon.
          8. Serve in mugs with whipped cream and a cinnamon stick.

          Yield: approximately one gallon of cider

          More Tips:

          • If you do happen to have access to a cider press, it’s always fun to extract juice from apples the “old-fashioned” way.
          • You can add a little rum and brown sugar to instantly make hard cider.
          • If you heat the cider to 160° F, you effectively pasteurize it, allowing it to keep a little longer – up to 21 days. If not, you’ll want to consume it within 7 days.

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          Cyndi Calhoun

          Cyndi is a passionate writer who writes about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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          Last Updated on January 13, 2022

          10 Cheap And Amazing Honeymoon Ideas

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          10 Cheap And Amazing Honeymoon Ideas

          A honeymoon is important.  The wedding is over.  The months, or even years, of stress and planning are finally over.  It’s time for the two of you to relax, settle in, and start enjoying your time together as you embark on your first journey as a family.

          To make the most of this time for the least amount of money, it’s important to focus on what you want out of a honeymoon.  This isn’t your typical list of touristy honeymoon locations everyone goes to.  Rather, it’s a list of cheap honeymoon experiences a couple can enjoy together, regardless of where it’s at.

          1. Camping

          A week long camping trip is a fantastic way to see how you mesh together as a couple.  You’re put in a low impact “survival” situation where it’s just the 2 of you and nature.  You have a chance to see how your new spouse handles themselves when left with the basics of life.  There are amazing national parks all over the United States where you can camp for a week for $20-30, disconnect from technology, and enjoy some of the natural wonders our nation has to offer.

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          2. Staycation

          You don’t have to go anywhere for a honeymoon.  In fact, the tradition of taking a honeymoon vacation is a relatively new one.  Prior to the 19th century, a honeymoon involved staying home together for a month to get to know each other physically.  Think of how blissful it could be to take a full month off work, disconnect from the outside world, and focus entirely on projects together.  You may not be wowing your friends and family with pictures of some exotic location, but they’ll be envious of your escape from the rat race nonetheless.

          3. Island Getaway

          People tend to overspend on their honeymoon vacations to Hawaii, Tahiti, etc.  Going to these places doesn’t have to be expensive.  You don’t need to stay in a 5 star resort when you’re on a Best Western budget.  You’re there to be in the atmosphere of the island, not a hotel room. Book a cheap flight and sleep in a hotel alternative, on the beach or in your car.  It’s the view in paradise that really matters.

          4. Fancy Resort

          Book an expensive resort, spa, or retreat in the city you live in.  While this may seem counterintuitive as a cheap destination, when you consider your savings on airfare and other travel costs, you can afford to be treated like royalty within your own city limits.  If you book a honeymoon package, you’ll end up with a lot of free amenities and extra attention.  There’s no need to fly halfway across the world to live the good life.

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          5. Road Trip

          The journey is often more fulfilling than the actual destination.  If you fly out to some exotic locale, you’ll be stuck on a plane for 8-30 hours.  Rent a luxury car, pick a handful of places you each have always wanted to visit, and go on an adventure.  You can keep food costs down by packing your own snacks, but it’s always a good idea to sample the local delicacies wherever you go, even if it’s only a few states over.

          6. Charter a Boat

          If the ocean is your thing, a week-long cruise can cost you $1500-$3000 per person, depending on the destination.  You also have to factor in travel costs to and from the cruise, alcohol, souvenirs, and on-shore excursions.  You’ll also be surrounded by people.  For the same price (and often much cheaper), you can charter your own boat and enjoy the experience in private.

          7. Las Vegas/Atlantic City

          If gambling is your thing, these are the places to do it.  Which one you choose depends on your preference, budget, and proximity.  The way to make this vacation cheaper is to gamble smart.  Stay away from low odd tables (i.e craps, roulette) and read up on the MIT blackjack strategies to beat the house.  If you do it right, you can win enough for a free trip (and gain a valuable team skill in the process).

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          8. Themed Retreats

          There are weeklong retreats all over the world where you can fully immerse yourselves as a couple into a hobby you’re both passionate about.  Go on a yoga/meditation retreat, a ranch, a vineyard/farm, a backpacking adventure, treasure hunt, or whatever you’re into.

          9. Working Honeymoon

          Your honeymoon doesn’t have to be a vacation.  For a truly memorable experience, dedicate a week to a charity or volunteer organization.  You can drive out to a campground to help restore it in the offseason.  Maybe you’ve always wanted to volunteer to help out your local animal shelter, plant trees, help the homeless, etc.  Use the time to do something together as a couple that will fulfill you spiritually while contributing to the community.  Just because you’re on a honeymoon doesn’t mean you can’t be productive.

          10. Festivals, Fairs & Special Events

          Every city, state, and country has festivals, fairs, and special events.  Find one you’re interested in.  If you time your wedding right, your honeymoon can be a trip to one of these festivals.  Burning Man, SXSW, Bonnaroo, the Renaissance Fair, regional harvest festivals, Mardi Gras, New Years Eve in Times Square, a movie premiere, or whatever you’re into.  If you plan your honeymoon at the right time in the right place, the possibilities are endless.

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          Featured photo credit: Josue Michel via unsplash.com

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