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Old 08-12-2012, 03:49 PM   #1
sashurlow
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Jan 2011
West Rutland, Vermont
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How does one make apple juice concentrate?

 
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Old 08-12-2012, 05:05 PM   #2
UpstateMike
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Nov 2011
Marion, NY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sashurlow View Post
How does one make apple juice concentrate?
Put it in a corner until it can learn to behave.
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Oh, and get a hydrometer. Psychic brewing is great and all, but hard numbers get rid of MUCH of the guess work.
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Old 08-12-2012, 06:02 PM   #3
CollegeCider
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Jul 2012
Erie, PA
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Originally Posted by UpstateMike View Post
Put it in a corner until it can learn to behave.


you can buy it at grocery stores.
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Old 08-12-2012, 06:51 PM   #4
GinKings
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Apr 2008
Bridgewater, NJ
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If you are using supermarket apple juice, I'd just buy the frozen cans of concentrate. If you are using fresh pressed cider, you can concentrate it by freezing. You can also concentrate by heating, but that changes the flavor.

I have freeze concentrated unfermented cider quite a bit. I used to partially freeze the cider and then skim off the ice. Now, I let the cider freeze solid. I've found this to be more efficient with a fraction of the labor needed for the partial freezing method. The most concentrated cider comes out at the beginning and gets gradually weaker until you have mostly water left. I divide it roughly into thirds. The first third is usually high gravity. The second third gets refrozen, since it's a bit weak. The last third gets dumped, since it is mostly water.

For small batches, you can freeze the cider in gallon plastic jugs. Let them freeze solid. Then, invert them and let them drain as they melt. If you are careful, you can balance them on a pint glass to drain. Empty the glass as it fills.

I prefer to freeze cider in buckets. I use a traditional fridge with freezer on top. Five gallon buckets and my taller bottling bucket will fit in the freezer. A bucket with a spigot is best. After freezing, just set it up so the spigot drains into a gallon jug or carboy. I've also used buckets without spigots. After freezing, I let the bucket melt a little, so the frozen cider isn't stuck to the sides and bottom of the bucket. Then, I balance the bucket of cider at a 45 degree angle on top of an empty bucket to drain. It sounds odd, but it is quite stable. Balancing the inverted bucket without melting a little first can cause problems. You don't want to balance the inverted bucket with the cider stuck to the bottom of the bucket.

The bucket on the left has been draining longer. You can see that the ice is almost white.
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Old 08-13-2012, 02:04 AM   #5
sashurlow
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Jan 2011
West Rutland, Vermont
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I never thought of freezing it to concentrate it.
How do you rehydrate it and get the concentration back to its original state?
How do you store it. Canning would set the pectin.
I would love to be able to store local apple juice for a spring batch of cider. Around here, the spring cider is mostly Mac. I would also love to mix early apples with late season apples.
Upstatemike... Thanks....
Scott

 
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Old 08-13-2012, 03:09 PM   #6
GinKings
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Apr 2008
Bridgewater, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sashurlow View Post
I never thought of freezing it to concentrate it.
How do you rehydrate it and get the concentration back to its original state?
How do you store it. Canning would set the pectin.
I would love to be able to store local apple juice for a spring batch of cider. Around here, the spring cider is mostly Mac. I would also love to mix early apples with late season apples.
Upstatemike... Thanks....
Scott
Storing and concentrating are two completely different questions. If you want to store cider for an extended period, just freeze it. Concentrating it through freezing is for raising the OG in your cider, not for making apple "Cup-a-Soup".

 
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Old 08-13-2012, 08:18 PM   #7
sashurlow
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Jan 2011
West Rutland, Vermont
Posts: 416
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Why wouldn't you concentrate it for storage? If I could turn 6 gallons into two, I could probably sneak it into my fridge without the wife complaining too much. Heck, I could refridgerate it long enough for winter to come and then just store it frozen in my garrage and then re-hydrate it for spring.
I have a chest freezer, but it came with the house and has never been turned on by me. I would rather not use that electricity for my cider alone. I would use it for concentrating, however.
Any reason NOT to concentrate for easier storage?
Scott

 
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