Our garden has been giving a lot of apples this year. We have tree 3 apple trees in our backyard, 2 belle boscoop and 1 unidentified species with two kind of apples on it. The belle boscoop trees were generous this year, compared to last year, and I gathered around 100 kg of harvested apples.
Belle boscoop apples are particularly good for preparing food like cakes, crumble, pie and to use in all kinds of stews and salads. They are also very juicy, which makes them ideal to press juice from.
4 years ago I tried to make apple juice for the first time in my life. At that time, I invested in a hand mill and press, but it took my husband and me two weekends and a lot of hand power to get juice out of our apples. In 2015, I teamed up with a friend, who has much better equipment (an electrical mill instead of a hand mill), which made the work much lighter: Cider making in 2015.
This year, I decided to try something different and I rented an electrical fruit mill + a balloon press from Maltbazaren.
The fruit mill was huge with a heavy motor, but this meant that I could just drop in whole appels without cutting them. That was for sure a plus!
I was impressed with how fine the apples came out of the press. It was literally apple puree: extremely finely mashed apples which already gave some juice as well.
The next step was the pressing of this apple puree. The balloon press I rented was very user friendly and could just be hooked on the water tap. You just turn the water hose on and the pressing starts.
The juice was amazingly sweet, probably because I waited until the first weekend of November to press my apples and they were very ripe. I measured the sugar in the apples with my densimeter and it was around 1040. It really tastes delicious 😋.
After the pressing, I divided the juice in three parts: 1. apple juice to be pasteurized so we can drink it just like that, 2. apple juice for making cider and 3. apple juice to be blended with honey to make a strong cider.
The apple juice to be pasteurized was put on bottles and then I used my Braumeister to pasteurize.
I put in 1 bottle with water, to measure the temperature inside the bottle. I waited until the temperature was 72 degrees Celsius and then I pasteurized then for 30 min.
We drink the juice now in the morning and it is still tasting fresh and nicely sweet.