Sunday, October 19, 2008

Fresh Apple Juice

Auenland, as Sabine has dubbed it, has seen this year a rich harvest of all kinds of fruits, especially apples.

Unfortunately, a heavy hailstorm in early July has left its marks on the apples: there is hardly a single fruit without an ugly scar. But they are very tasty nevertheless, and they make an excellent juice. So this is how my brother and me have spent the last two weekends:

We have gathered apples from the trees my family owns around the village,

packed them in my car and brought them to the press of the local fruit-growing and gardening association.

There, the apples are being processed to juice. They are washed and shredded,

and the shred is squeezed in the press.

The gardening association has an apparatus to heat up and pasteurise the juice on-site (the silvery cask in the background on the the right), and fill it in bags to store it. But the most tasty juice is the fresh, untreated one.



  1. wow. i love to drink apple juice!

  2. Hi Stefan,

    Very nice photos and guide through the process. I wonder did you also end up with any apple sauce or more importantly do you plan to ferment any to become cider? We all know about the tradition of beer in Germany yet are there any cider fanciers?



  3. Hi Phil,

    I wonder did you also end up with any apple sauce ...

    not from these apples... but at this time of the year, Apfelmus and Apple Crumble are the default desserts my mother prepares at home.

    or more importantly do you plan to ferment any to become cider?

    No, we don't - my grandfather and my father used to do it, but it's more work, and you need a bit of special equipment and a good cellar.

    The apple juice prepared from our apples by the gardening association has the big advantage that it has been pasteurised, so you can just store it without any special care, and it's no extra work.

    We all know about the tradition of beer in Germany yet are there any cider fanciers?

    Very good point! As a former temporary "Frankfurter", I cannot but mention the famous local speciality, Ebbelwoi, which is a kind of cider. In the region where I come from, in northern Saarland, it is known as Viez, and that's what my grandfather and father used to prepare. But I have to admit, I didn't appreciate Viez/Ebbelwoi before I moved to Frankfurt.

    Cheers, Stefan

  4. You labelled it "useless knowledge." On the contrary.

    My wife makes "apple crumble" a lot too and my daughter in law too. Of course with apples that are losing their looks. Like bananas, and banana bread. I was thinking "Mead" and honey. Any attempt with this?


  5. Hell, yeah it is. Why pastuerize it at all?

  6. Hi Plato, bellamy,

    no, we have never tried to produce mead.

    Why pastuerize it at all?

    If you don't, fermentation sets in within a few days or so... but you have to take care a bit of the fermenting juice (keep it cool, at a constant temperature...), unless just you end up with some sour or bitter stuff instead of tasty cider. I don't know any details, though.

    On the other hand, the moderately heated, pasteurised juice tastes nearly like the fresh one, and can be kept for a year at least. On Saturday, we got 115 litres of juice from a bit less than 200 kg of apples (four "Zentner"), so it's important that you can keep it a bit ;-)

    Cheers, Stefan

  7. Looks tasty and very 'organic'; quite delicious most likely.

  8. Till a few years ago, fresh unpasteurized apple juice was available from the farms around here in suburban New Jersey. Too many salmonella scares (not from apple juice, and from other parts of the country, not New Jersey) later it is gone. The pasteurized stuff just does not taste the same.



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