So in the past I've fermented hard cider using store bought apple juice, this year I had an opportunity to go pick some fresh apples. So the process started by created the machinery I would use to extract the juice, which i believe is an important part of this story.
I bought a garbage disposal new from home depot, wired it so i could plug it into a wall, and fitted a downspout so that the mulched apples would pour directly into a bucket. This worked better then i could have thought it would. I sterilized the garbage disposal as best i could before started, rough chopped the apples for a about hour or two and then just started feeding them through the disposal, it turned them into apple pulp, which i then deposited into a perferated bag and went to town with my grape press. The apples being processed as they were made the job WAY easy, the grape press rocked.
I squeezed about 100lbs of apples and got about 8.5 gallons of juice. I'm only brewing in a 6.5 gallon glass carboy so i pasturized the other2 gallons with some clove and made the best damn apple juice you'll ever drink.
I crushed up 6 campden tablets and let them do their magic to the wild yeast and other bad stuff in the juice for about a day and a half ( probably 30hours) and right now I'm boiling some juice with 4 cinnamon sticks, 1 glove and 2lbs of dark brown sugar for some added flavor to my cider.
*fast forward* Okay, so my starter with the sugar and cinnamon has cooled down and ive added the yeasty goodness to the batch. My gravity right now with everything added is 1.065. I'm using a dry ale yeast safale us-05 and am hoping for something around 9%, i expect to have to stop it early because i want to back sweeten and charge the bottles for a carbonated cider.
so here is my ingrediants list;
100lbs of apples ( i used heirloom honeycrisp, freakin amazing )
11.5g safale us-05 dry ale yeast (1pkg)
2lbs dark brown sugar
4 large cinnamon sticks
So, if anyone has made a batch like this before, or has some insigh anyways, please feel free to share it with me, this is my first batch of home made hard cider doing it the" right way ". I've never carbonated before, and have only read how to do it.