How to Make Apple Cider Vinegar from Apple Peelings.

Apple cider vinegar has become a buzz word amongst the health-conscious crowd lately, and rightfully so. It is not only a culinary necessity, but it can cure skin conditions, detangle hair, stop heartburn, play a roll in weight loss and detox the body. Click here for more information on apple cider vinegar. Real apple cider vinegar, with the mother, may be easy to find in the grocery store now, but it isn't cheap. In fact, you can expect to pay around $9.99 for 1 L (quart) at many grocery stores. This doesn't go over very well with the budget, but the good news is, it can be made for almost nothing, from apple scraps you would normally compost or feed to your chickens. AND it is easy to make. Sound good? Yes! Here is how. And start collecting your glass ACV or maple syrup bottles now! Make apple sauce/apple pies/apple fruit leather/apple WHATEVER, where peeling and coring the apples is involved. Enjoy your whatever, and keep your apple peelings. If you don't have enough for the first go round, store it in a zip lock or a jar in the freezer and add to it until you have enough. You can use apple cores too, if you aren't concerned about the minimal amount of cyanide that is in the apple seeds. If this is a concern for you, then just use the peels.Directions:
  1. Collect your apple peelings and put them in a gallon glass jar/container. Those large pickle jars from Costco, or from the thrift store, work perfectly. Even a large glass cookie jar will work.
  2. Once your jar is filled with peelings, cover it with a water/sugar syrup made from 1 gallon of boiling water with 1 cup of white sugar dissolved in it. Your peels might float a bit. Some people weight it down with something so they don't float. I don't bother.
  3. Set your jar in a cool, dark-ish location (I used my laundry room) and cover the jar with cheese cloth and an elastic, making sure it is thick enough that fruit flies won't get in. Because they will try!
  4. Stir once a day for 1 week.
  5. After a week, strain the apple peels through cheese cloth and allow to drain over a bowl overnight, to collect the juice. Then give the cheese cloth a good squeeze, and feed the apple peels to the chickens/pigs.
  6. Pour the strained juice back into the jar and cover with cheese cloth again.
  7. Stir once a day.
  8. Store in a cool location out of direct light for 6 weeks or until it tastes as strong as you'd like it.
  9. Bottle and store in your pantry or fridge indefinitely. Enjoy!
Tips:
  • If you notice mold on your apple cider vinegar at any stage, skim it off and keep going. I have never experienced mold growth but have read that it can happen.
  • Some people weight their apple peels down during the first week so no apple peels are exposed to air. They have a tendency to float. You can do this if you like, but as long as you stir it once a day I don't think it is necessary, and I never bother.
How to Make Apple Cider Vinegar from Apple Peelings.
Author: 
Recipe type: Condiment
 
Make your own apple cider vinegar from scrap apples!
Ingredients
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 gallon water (4 litres)
  • Apple peels and cores
Instructions
  1. Collect your apple peelings and put them in a gallon glass jar/container. Those large pickle jars from Costco, or from the thrift store, work perfectly. Even a large glass cookie jar will work.
  2. Once your jar is filled with peelings, cover it with a water/sugar syrup made from 1 quart of boiling water with 1 cup of white sugar dissolved in it. Your peels might float a bit. Some people weight it down with something so they don’t float. I don’t bother.
  3. Set your jar in a cool, dark-ish location (I used my laundry room) and cover the jar with cheese cloth and an elastic, making sure it is thick enough that fruit flies won’t get in. Because they will try!
  4. Stir once a day for 1 week.
  5. After a week, strain the apple peels through cheese cloth and allow to drain over a bowl overnight, to collect the juice. Then give the cheese cloth a good squeeze, and feed the apple peels to the chickens/pigs.
  6. Pour the strained juice back into the jar and cover with cheese cloth again.
  7. Stir once a day.
  8. Store in a cool location out of direct light for 6 weeks or until it tastes as strong as you’d like it.
  9. Bottle and store in your pantry or fridge indefinitely. Enjoy!
Notes
◾If you notice mold on your apple cider vinegar at any stage, skim it off and keep going. I have never experienced mold growth but have read that it can happen. ◾Some people weight their apple peels down during the first week so no apple peels are exposed to air. They have a tendency to float. You can do this if you like, but as long as you stir it once a day I don’t think it is necessary, and I never bother.

 

 

How To Make Yogurt in Mason Jars and a Quilt.

Yogurt is, quite simply, super easy to make. As in, you’ll be shaking your head wondering why you haven’t tried it before. There are lots of reasons to make your own: it is economical, healthy, plastic-free, additive/preservative-free, and a good way to use up extra milk before it goes bad. And you don’t need to buy a yogurt maker to do it. Here is how to make it in mason jars and a quilt. Enjoy!!  This is one of life’s simple pleasures.

How To Make Yogurt in Mason Jars and a Quilt.
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast, snack, condiment
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Simple instructions for a delicious yogurt made with ingredients and utensils you have at home.
Ingredients
  • 1 quart milk
  • 1 quart 18% cream (or milk)
  • 2 tbsp. plain yogurt with live culture (this is your starter)
Instructions
  1. In a large pot heat milk/cream to 110F. Remove from heat.
  2. Whisk in yogurt.
  3. Pour into quart jars and put on lids and rings.
  4. Place jars in a box or cooler completely surrounded and covered by a quilt.
  5. Store in warm location (room temperature)
  6. Leave for 10-12 hours then refrigerate jars.
  7. Serve.
Notes
If you want a thick, Greek-style yogurt, there are 3 ways to do it choose one: 1. Use half milk, half 18% table cream. If you don't want it that high in fat choose one of the next two options. 2. Add 2 tbsp. milk powder when you add the yogurt to thicken it. The final product will be thicker. 3. Strain it through cheese cloth after it is made to remove some of the whey which will make it thicker.

This post has been linked to Frugally Sustainable’s Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways #93.

Tasty Asian-Style Plum Sauce for Dipping or Stir-Frys

This year we were fortunate enough to receive 200 lb of Italian plums from my parents. 200 lb! What to do with 200 lb of plums! With 3 large dehydrators working 24/7, 12 quarts of plums canned, frozen plums, plum jam… I was searching for another recipe to use up some plums before they went bad. A reader suggested plum sauce, and I found a great recipe in the Bernardin (Ball) Home Canning Recipe Book. I made some alterations though, based on ingredients I had and flavors I liked. The result was a fantastic sweet and sour dipping sauce that is perfect for stir-fries, egg rolls, chicken fingers and more!

This recipe has been adapted from the Bernardin Home Canning recipe book.

 

Asian-Style Plum Sauce
Recipe type: Sauce
Cuisine: Asian, American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 half-pint jars
 
A simple and delicious Asian-style dipping sauce made with fresh Italian plums that is great on stir-frys, or as a dipping sauce for spring rolls or chicken fingers etc.
Ingredients
  • 4 pounds plums, pitted and chopped. (about 10 cups)
  • 2 cups brown organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup white organic cane sugar
  • ¾ cup chopped onion (about 1 medium)
  • 1 tbsp. dry mustard
  • 1 tsp. dried red pepper flakes (adjust to desired spiciness)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c. distilled white vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
  • 6 fresh basil leaves, chopped
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients except plums in a large pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Add plums and bring to a boil.
  3. Simmer for 30 minutes, or until desired consistency, stirring frequently.
  4. Using an immersion blender, blend ingredients until sauce is uniform in texture.
  5. Pour into prepared ½ pint canning jars, wipe rims clean, and add prepared lids and rings, according to manufacturer's instructions.
  6. Hot water bath can for 20 minutes.