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Thursday, July 1, 2010

How to Can Homemade Apple Cider

I have an interest in preserving the old ways of living. My hope is that we don't loose the knowledge on how, to  preserve, and live off the land, which were common knowledge to our  great grandparents. They are very important to keep alive.This kind of living helps stretch your grocery dollars further. There is a sense of accomplishment when you can look at your final product, even joy wells up inside me, and says good job.

Canning apple cider. When you have buckets and buckets of apples, apple cider making is the number 1 choice of what to do with them.  Canning the cider preserves it for years, lets face it you shouldn't drinks 10 gallons of apple cider in 1 week. I enjoy breaking the seal of the fresh taste of summer, in the fall, and winter season.

The equipment you will need are the following.
Canning pot large. 20- 1/2 gallon jars large mouth or small mouth. Large or small lids, with matching new rings. Funnel for pouring in to jars. Jar holder for pulling jars out of hot water. Plenty of counter space.
First things first. Must clean jars with hot soapy water using bottle brush cleaner.

Place lids in pan of water, heat on low you just want the rubber part to soften, not melt off. When placed on the jar it creates a seal.

Place clean wet jars in oven at 200 degrees for 30 minutes.
Place apple cider in a large pot to boil. When apple cider heats up it starts forming scum.
I use a large wooden spoon to skim the scum off the top of the hot apple cider.

Using funnel pour boiling hot apple cider into jar. Leave 1 1/2" head space.
Before placing lid. Take clean paper towel wet it and wipe lip of jar, followed by a dry paper towel. this step is very important. The slightest bit of food, or juice can prevent proper sealing of the jar.

Place warmed lid on jar. Place ring on top of lid. Tighten normal, not to tight or it will pucker, not to loose or it will not create the vacuum it needs to seal.
Place hot jars in water bath to boil.
Water level should cover the juice height in jars. Bring to a boil. Not to rapid or the bottles will burst. A slow gentle boil  time for 20 minutes.
If you do it right you'll hear a wonder pop sound within 10 minutes of pulling jars out to cool.
The lid should look like this after it pops. Flat. It should not have a hump in the center. And when opening the jar of juice, a sucking vacuum sound should be heard.

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