Cider: Hard and soft

Apples are terrific. They cleanse the body, they’re easy to carry around, they’re versatile and they’re yummy. Even lazy teenagers will eat them. (Oranges are too much effort to peel according to a recent schoolyard survey.) And 100% apple juice is:

  • fat free;
  • saturated fat free;
  • sodium free;
  • cholesterol free and,
  • one of the best sources of the mineral boron, which is thought to promote bone health
  • heart friendly . Recent tests show apple juice to reduce plaque in the arteries preventing cholesterol from sticking to them.

You can purchase apples and apple cider kerbside on your trips to the country. 36 states in the US grow apples commercially so you’re almost sure to come across one on your travels.

Hard cider – it’s easy to make!

Apple cider will last up to a year in the freezer. Alternatively you can turn regular cider into hard cider very easily: simply leave the cider in its jug for five weeks. You need to replace the screw cap with a bung and airlock.  These cost about $1 from a home brew supplies store. And that’s it. The natural yeasts do it all for you. After five weeks the liquid “falls bright” and all the sediment sinks to the bottom of the jug. (This won’t work with pasteurized apple juice.)

Remember to drink sensibly. Hard cider can be powerful stuff. And don’t give it to the kids!