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Racked it off the sediment of dead yeast and apple stuff into a clean container to finish fermenting.

 

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Bottling day. The cider had cleared and fermented to dry. I siphoned the cider off the sediment and added four cans of frozen 100% apple juice and one cup of brown sugar. This serves two purposes -- adds a little sweet, but also gives the remaining yeast something to eat in the bottle to produce the natural carbonation. I'm using 1-litre wire bail bottles. 

The nasty part of this hobby is all the cleaning you have to do to keep everything sanitized so you don't get spoilage or funky off-flavors. The worst of the cleaning is doing the bottles. I give them a hot, soapy water cleaning followed by a chlorine water bath. This little gadget hooks to a hose and helps a lot with the rinsing. Push down on the bar and water flows. 

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Siphon off the sediment into the bottling bucket. In that is the melted frozen concentrate and the brown sugar dissolved in a little cider. 

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Give it a good stir to combine the cider, concentrate and sugar. Then get ready to siphon the cider into the bottles. 

This little gadget goes onto the end of the siphon tube that goes into the bottle. Drop it in the bottle and the pin is pushed up and lets the cider flow. When the cider reaches the top of the bottle, lift it up and the flow stops. Pull out the tube and it leaves the perfect amount of head space. 

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Finished product -- 17 liters plus the test bottle. The test bottle is about ⅔ full. By squeezing it I can judge the level of carbonation pressure building up in the bottles. When it gets pretty tight, I'll halt the fermentation through pasteurization. Should be within a few days. 

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Well, the test bottle is swollen up, so it's time to pasteurize. Bring a big ol' pot of water up to 190 degrees, stick the bottles in for 15 minutes and that knocks out the yeast for good, halting the fermentation that produces the carbonation. 

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Your last post was at the pasteurization point on September 12. You never reported after that. Good stuff? Changes you would make?

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