Ok, so I know Florida doesn't really know that it is fall yet and having hot apple cider in 90 degree weather isn't necessarily ideal, but I actually made this for an Autumn Sangria that I am making later. Plus even though Florida is a little behind on fall that doesn't mean my house can't have the aroma's of fall! So let the apple cider cooking begin!
First, I quartered my apples. All I did was remove the stems...nothing fancy. In the picture above I have an orange in the bowl. I did use and orange on the first batch I made and I felt like it made the cider very bitter. If you do decide to use an orange I recommend peeling it. That will help cut back on the bitter taste and still add a touch of citrus to the cider.
Next, I added the apples, spices, and sugar in a large stock pot. For my second batch I didn't have anymore cinnamon sticks so I used ground cinnamon instead. It worked just as good as cinnamon sticks and was much cheaper. Also, I am not a fan of really sweet cider so I only added a little bit of sugar. You can always add more sugar to your liking and use spices of your choice.
Then I added enough water to cover the apples but still have some room to prevent it from boiling over. I am the worse at having a pot boil over so it's better to be safe than sorry.
I let the apples boil with the top off for one hour. AHHHHH the smells were amazing! Florida might not feel like fall but my house sure smells like it.
After letting them boil for an hour, I then grabbed a potato masher and mashed the apples. I let the cider simmer in this mash for two hours covered. Of course I had to taste test. Oh boy...was it delicious! Imagine how good it tasted after simmering in that mash. Pour me a glass right now!
After the cider has simmered for two hours then it is time to strain it with a thin mesh sieve.
Time to serve and enjoy!
Homemade Apple Cider: