Pressing fresh apple juice is one of our family's favorite activities! Here in Appalachia, there are many old orchards and trees of generous friends that supply us with mountains of apples to enjoy each year.
We often head out in our pickup truck and load up all of our baskets and crates with every shape, size, and color of apple you can imagine! Sometimes, when branches are heavy with ripe apples, we will scramble up the trees and give them a light shake and get some real "apple rain"
Once we collect, we return home to press. Often friends gather to help and we all set up in the front yard for the pressing process. First we feed them through the grinder, which is a hand-cranked device that smashes the apples in to small, juicy, apple pulp. Next, we place the pulp in to a wooden press. As we compress the apple pulp, gallons of juice will flow out of the spout at the bottom. We are constantly dipping our cups under to test the results...Yum!
Apple juice can be canned, fermented in to hard cider, frozen, boiled down in to an apple syrup, or enjoyed as-is, deliciously sweet and raw nutrition straight from the source!