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Old 06-07-2008, 04:29 PM   #1
jameswardpeterson
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Default newbies cider attempt

So I just got into brewing, and I figured I'd start out with a cider thinking that; not too many ingredients, easily available, and hard to screw up.

I know some of my equipment is very unorthodox, but its the best that i can currently obtain from the situation i am in. I am using a 3 gallon plastic container with a hose adapter drilled in the top leading to a home made air lock. I am sanitizing by wiping everything down with bleach and a sponge.

what i really need is a critique of the recipe I am using,

3 gallons of Trader Joe’s organic no preservative cider
2 lbs. confectioners sugar
Approx 1 teaspoon (probably more) of lemon juice as acid mix
1 pack wyeast cider yeast


I plan to finalize the ferment with sorbate and then sweeten either with sugar or lactose. Does anyone have an idea on how much potassium sorbate i should be using to stop the ferment? also, will the half assed method of putting this in used seltzer bottles be alright for storage?

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Old 06-07-2008, 04:33 PM   #2
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I use sorbate and campden together to stabilize. It will not stop a fermentation usually, but once the wine or cider is finished, it will keep it from restarting when sweetening is added. If you use lactose, you don't need to use sorbate. For honey, sugar, etc, you do. I use 2/3 tsp of sorbate in 5 gallons to stabilize, along with 1 campden tablet per gallon (crushed and dissolved).

I'd lose the confectioner's sugar- that has corn starch in it. Either use table sugar or corn sugar, or no sugar at all.

I'd recommend reading up on better sanitizing- bleach can cause some off-flavors if not diluted and rinse properly. A sponge can harbor bacteria and is very hard to sanitize. You will need some siphon tubing, also. You can't pour it into bottles or into secondary- you need to siphon it.

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Old 06-07-2008, 06:05 PM   #3
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As you have access to a trader joe's (there's one right near me and I use it for juice to ferment all the time) the only thing I have to say about the recipe itself (not going into the state of your set-up) is to buy a few different varieties of apple juice from them, I had WONDERFUL luck with this one http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=67156 and it's still getting better.

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Old 06-08-2008, 02:06 AM   #4
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Confectioner's sugar has corn starch in it. I have no idea what it will do, it might make it cloudy, or it might make it full bodied, you may want to go with regular sugar, brown sugar, or honey.

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