I had great luck with my first peach cider attempt. It had to be luck because I never tried to brew cider. Prior to that I had been strictly a beer man.
Here is the recipe I'm using for a three gallon batch. It's a slight variation from my last attempt so, I can't guarantee the results. I suspect there are veteran cider makers here that could greatly improve on this recipe or method ...please join in, I'm eager to improve my methods and, more importantly, my product.
Things You will Need
9 lbs of peaches
3 lbs of sugar
I packet of wine yeast (bakers yeast will work)
3 gallons Water (I only use filtered water.)
Boiling pot large enough to hold the peaches with lots of room left
Fermenting container(s) I"m using a 5 gallon bucket configured with a hole in the lid for an air trap
Three - 1 gal glass jars
Thirty Two - 12 oz bottlesThe Process
Shell and quarter (or eighth) the peaches. Leave the skin, but be sure to take off the sticky labels if the peaches are from the store. :-)
Put your peaches in the boiling pot.
Cover your peaches with water. (don't add too much)
Boil until the peaches break down. You want the peaches to literally fall apart. I do a vigorous stir every few minutes after the boil starts to help break down the peaches. This can take some time so don't plan on going anywhere for a few hours.
Stir contents occasionally to prevent burning the bottom.
After your peaches are near mush, remove from heat, and let it all cool to room temperature. I put my pot in the kitchen sink, add water to fill the sink, then add some ice to assist the cooling process.
Put the sugar into your fermenting container while waiting for the peach water to cool.
As soon as your peach water reaches room temperature, strain off the peach pulp collecting the liquid into your fermenting container using cheese cloth or other straining device. (Don't worry that some of the pulp from the peaches falls through.)
Stir the mixture in the fermenting bucket until your confident the sugar has dissolved. (It's okay to add some water to help.)
Add water to your fermenting vessel to equal approximately 3 gallons.
Pitch your yeast, and give the mixture another good stir.
Cover and attach your air trap.
Store in a room that maintains a constant temperature below 76 degrees.
When your air trap stops bubbling, rack (transfer) and strain your cider into smaller one gallon jars. Put a good lid on the jars.
I let my cider sit for two or three weeks in one gallon jars to clarify; you'll see the cider get clearer as sediment forms on the bottom. When I'm happy with the color of the cider, I bottle it into 12 oz containers, leaving the sediment behind. Some brewers will rack their cider another time. letting it sit for another week or two before bottling. Mason jars work well, but if you want sparkling cider, add 1 oz of sugar (7 teaspoons) to each gallon container, and dissolve the sugar before parting the cider into 12 oz bottles. It will take 7 to 10 days, at room temperature for the latent yeast to turn the sugar into CO2.
My last batch was amazing. Everyone who tired it wanted more. Like I said ... I think I got lucky.
Feel free to offer suggestions. I'm not emotionally attached to any of this.