The reason I have called it 'Ghetto Cider' is that it won't appeal to purists for the following reasons:
- I don't have a secondary ferment, it goes straight from the bucket into the bottle
- I don't use a cider press to squueze out the mash
- I add sugar
- The carbonation is via sugar charges rather than residual sweetness.
Nevertheless, this recipe will make you a clear, dry, refreshing, apply, alcoholic (4-5%) cider.
And it is dead easy to make!
Step 1: Ingredients
6-8kg of apples. Make sure the apples are at their sweetest, ie, really soft and almost at the point of going off. This is when they will have the highest fruit sugars and good for cider. Also no-one will want to eat them!
champagne yeast - I used this yeast because it was what I had at hand. You could use brewer's yeast, but if the alcohol content goes up too much the yeast will die and create foulness.
2kg of sugar - for a 'cidery' taste you can use plain table sugar. I used dextrose to give it a clean-ness.
Bucket - the white food safe buckets with a lid are excellent - you can buy these from a hardware shop for $10 or so. Make sure they are food safe, have a handle and a sealable lid.
Racking tube - any food safe tube will do, about 4 feet with an internal diameter of 1cm or so.
Airlock - you can grab these from a brew shop or use a tissue taped to a hole in the lid of the bucket. They look like a chemistry set figure of 8 with two bulbs. Fill them with water and then stick into a hole in the lid of the bucket.
Muslin cloth for filtering out the apple bits.
Cleaner and sterilizer - the best stuff to use is the 'pink stuff'. http://www.grapeandgrain.ca/info/cleanandsanitize.html
Bottles - you can recycle glass bottles if you have a capper, or Cooper's Brewery sell some nice plastic ones which are good enough to use straight away.
Carbonation drops / sugar charges. To make the cider fizzy.