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Old 01-26-2013, 06:21 PM   #1
northernbrewin
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Default Simple Apple Cider

So I have been doing a lot of reading the last couple days and decided on my recipe to try today. I plan on doing 2 gallons in two 1 gallon jugs.
4 - 64 ounce 100% apple juice
1/2 pound brown sugar
1/2 pound dextrose
US-04 ale yeast
2 - 1 gallon milk jugs with lids and airlocks
So I plan to pour 1 1/2 jug apple juice in each gallon jug. I will mix 1/4 pound of each sugar in the remaining 1/2 jugs of juice and shake/mix thoroughly. When mixed well I will add the 1/2 jugs to the 1 gallon jugs. I will pitch yeast and let sit for 3-7 days until SG gets around 1.03-1.02. I will then cold crash for 24-48 hours. I will then remove from fridge and rack to a secondary and wait to bottle u till temps come to 50-60 degrees. I will then bottle and leave at fermentation temp until my test pop bottle is firm to the squeeze. After all is said and done i will pasteurize either stove top or dishwasher haven't decided and refrigerate for at least a week before I try it. This will be my first shot so I am hoping my process works out. I will update when I get done pitching the yeast. And advice or suggestions welcome as this will be a learning curve!

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Old 01-26-2013, 06:36 PM   #2
Pickled_Pepper
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Sounds like a good plan to me. I've made a lot of cider and still haven't been brave enough to stove top pasteurize

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Old 01-26-2013, 07:54 PM   #3
northernbrewin
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So I got all my stuff and just debating whether to use brown sugar or just straight dextrose any opinions would be appreciated!

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Old 01-26-2013, 08:43 PM   #4
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Got them all mixed and yeast pitched! I ended up doing one gallon with 1/2 pound dextrose and the other gallon with 1/4 pound dextrose and 1/4 pound brown sugar. I figured I could test the taste difference. I plan to carbonate half of each and leave the other half still and see how the taste turns out on each.
I have been contemplating carbonating in mason jars and pasteurizing when the pop bottle gets hard. And do the other half in mason jars and pasteurize right away. I'm just wondering if the lids of the mason jars will handle any carbonation? If not I can just use bottles as I have a few left over after I bottle my ipa that's fermenting right now.

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Old 01-26-2013, 08:44 PM   #5
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Forgot to add the pic!

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Old 01-26-2013, 09:55 PM   #6
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I would avoid mason jars if you are carbonating. A capper and caps are cheap...and you can dumpster dive for bottles. I'm partial to brown sugar myself because I like the carmel flavor it imparts on my ciders, but dextrose should work just fine. I also use a handful of raisins to add nutrients (chopped and steeped in a small amount of juice to make a tea)...I'm not 100% sure it works, but it helps me mentally

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Old 01-28-2013, 01:44 PM   #7
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Well i checked on the cider today and its bubbling away. I like being able to see it in the milk jugs as all my beer brews have been in buckets. You can really see the yeast doing its work through the jugs. i had a question regarding the best way to get some cider out to check my SG levels? any suggestions would be appreciated. I never did end up checking the OG before i pitch as im not to concerned with alcohol content really. Im more concerned with letting it dry out to much and having to hassle with back sweetening as that seems to be more headache than its worth for a percent or 2 more alcohol.

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Old 01-28-2013, 03:22 PM   #8
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I use nottingham on most of my 1 gallon batches and ferment around 60ºF. With this yeast, which is similar to US-04, I let it ride for 2 weeks and when I rack it, it's 1.020 every time. If I pitch juice on top of a previous yeast cake, it finishes at 1.012 EVERY TIME! You just have to keep temps low and slow and eventually you'll be able to make cider without a hydrometer. (But it depends on your conditions)

A lot of people use turkey basters for drawing cider, there's the wine thief, but mine's really too big for a 1 gallon jug. I'd just tip it up and pour from the jug into your hydro tube. US-04 stays pretty compact on the bottom. With taking multiple samples you are going to start eating into your 1 gallon supply pretty quickly unless you pour it back in. (Which to me is a bad idea...but others will say it's ok)

If it gets a little dry in the 2 week period it's easy enough to just add a little concentrate to sweeten it up. (I assume you are drinking it still from the jug? - it might look low rent, but it's SOOOO tasty that way )

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