October 3, 2013
Ahh! We're already an hour into Hadley's nap time and I'm still writing this, so I still haven't blogged yet! I keep wanting to post about this homemade apple cider that I made over a week ago, but everyday I get distracted. Take yesterday; I had two amazing friends over and their cutie pie babies and there was good conversation and my german chocolate cake... how could I get any blogging done with all of that awesomeness around? :) Today my distraction came in the form of Instagram, which, have I mentioned? I love it so much. Thanks to you guys who follow me over there. (@summerharms if you want to find me!) I actually owe IG for a lot of my 50 Promises orders. (thank you!!) Plus, I'm finding that it leads to me taking pictures that I actually go back and browse through like a scrapbook. And that, I can totally love. (I will never be a scrapbooker. It's just not in my make up.)

For those of you who don't have Instagram, here's my latest post from today:
 Tomato Soup + cheesy garlic bread from our lunch today. 
And I was tagged by the awesome Chrystal Smith (check out her new blog!) to share a few things that I was thinking about right now...
1. I hope those mushrooms in the fridge are still good. I need them for stroganoff tonight.
2. Why do I procrastinate cooking kale? (Braised kale from #thefamilyflavor is on the dinner menu tonight too)
3. Loving Mark Driscoll's new sermon series.
4. Excited for Parks & Rec tonight.
5. Harry Potter is the best soundtrack ever and I will play it everyday until I can start up the Christmas music.
6. Ready for a new book.
7. Wanting to buy a treadmill and a clean-burning candle for fall.
8. Wanting to post about homemade cider, but I keep getting distracted by IG...

But now, finally, for some apple cider. This isn't freshly pressed like a true cider should be, but it was actually made (not a bottle of apple juice with spices added). I'm talking I started out with whole apples and water. And they made something delish. Beautiful, clear, and rusty red. It was such a fun day. My house smelled like Christmas morning! It made over half a gallon of finished cider, so we've got plenty down in the freezer to thaw out when the Harms family reunites for our annual Deer Hunting Holiday. I'm a big fan of a crockpot of hot apple cider sitting out on the counter all day long when the whole family gets together. It's especially nice for the sisters and sisters-in-law who will be sitting and sipping and chatting and nursing babies all afternoon. Hooray for cider season. (and you know that I'm planning on saving some of that frozen cider for Christmas Day.)

Homemade Crockpot Apple Cider

10 large apples
(1 orange optional, but wait until the last hour to add it)
2 cinnamon sticks
2 Tablespoons mulling spices
1/4 cup maple syrup*
roughly 1 half gallon of filtered water

Chop apples and oranges into large chunks. Put apples, cinnamon sticks, spices, and maple syrup into a large crockpot (at least 7 or 8 quarts). Fill the crockpot with enough water to cover the apples, and put the lid on. Turn it on high for the first 3 hours, then stir and turn down to low, and let it go for another 4-6 hours. I stirred mine occasionally, because I was so excited and felt like babysitting it, you probably don't need to though. At the end of the cooking time, scoop cider mixture out of the crockpot with a 2 cup-glass measuring cup and pour scoop by scoop, pressing it through a fine strainer to separate the liquid from the fruit mash and peels. Serve hot, or let cool and store finished cider in the fridge for 3 or 4 days. You can also pour it into glass jars and freeze. (Just make sure to leave a couple inches of room at the top for expansion when it freezes.) Reheat on low or simmer to serve again later. 
My cider turned out pretty concentrated and not terribly sweet, so I've been adding a little water and a spoonful of maple syrup when I reheat a mug for myself. 

*Feel free to add up to 1 cup of sweetener. I prefer to have my cider less sweet and add a bit of maple syrup to individual cups as we serve it. 

cider after several hours of brewing time / finished cider 

What hot and spicy drinks are you enjoying this fall?


Mareen [eeny] said...

this cider sounds amazing. i need to make some. we have so many apples from my grandpa's garden.

Chrystal Smith said...

Oh my word, I am so going to try this! I loooove homemade cider, but I've never tried it totally from scratch like this. Totally inspired!

Kris said...

This looks delicious! I've never made homemade cider, because we always get fresh pressed cider from a local farmer. Will try this if we get to picking some apples soon! Thanks.

Bridget said...

this looks awesome.

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about this blog

Hello, I'm Summer. A people-loving introvert whose hope and life is in Jesus. His promises are my passion and my ministry is homelife. This blog is a place for me to write about everyday things. Especially food. My favorite thing to do is sit around a table, lingering over a long meal with good conversation. I live with my husband and our 2 littles. We like blizzards, thrifting, grammar, guacamole, cheerful hearts, nice manners, good movies, and making simple, real, nutrient-dense food.

"If Christ be anything, He must be everything."
-C.H. Spurgeon

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