Originally Posted by Newbie69
I read a lot of this section but not the whole thing to find this answer. May be a stupid question,but do you back sweeten before or after you pasteurize? Also could I do this to a gallon jug with a twist off and then just refrigerate it?
From your question, I don't think you have thought through the processes involved in making bottle conditioned, semi-sweet, sparkling cider.
For example, you're not going to carbonate your cider in a gallon wine jug. Its made for still wine, not carbonated. And if you are going to make still (not carbonated) cider, then there is no need to pasteurize at all.
How would you backsweeten after pasteurization? You would have to open up the bottles, which would defeat the purpose of bottle conditioning.
Here's the overview of the steps I use:
1) make your cider
2) backsweeten and/or prime your cider at the same time you bottle (the yeast are still active at this point and will begin to eat up the sugars in your backsweetener)
3) when the bottles are carbonated (but not overcarbonated) you need to stop the yeast, so that is when you pasteurize
An alternative approach you might consider is very well described at www.makinghardcider.com