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Notes from the Field Classroom: Apple Season

15 October
nl1 This is an incredibly beautiful month on the farm and in the fields. The weather is cool and crisp–just like a good apple! The mighty apple is a very important cash crop in our area with a long history. Apples are extremely versatile and can be eaten fresh off the tree, baked into countless varieties of pies, cakes, and tarts, juiced, dried, and sauced.As part of our fall tours with school groups we have been picking apples and pressing them in our old time-y hand cranked apple cider press.What is the difference between Apple Cider and Apple Juice? Apple Cider is made of fresh crushed and squeezed (squished) apples that hasn’t been filtered or pasteurized or sweetened. Apple juice is typically filtered to remove most of the sediment or particulates then pasteurized to increase shelf life.nl3The students love to throw the apples into the crusher and watch the juice get squeezed out. Almost everyone comments on how sweet and refreshing the drink is. Be sure to add water to your cider or it will be too sweet!

There are many varieties of apples and all can be made into cider, but we like to use Galas and Newton Pippins. Martinelli’s Co. has been making cider in the Pajaro Valley for 145 years and we are proud to be a part of that tradition in our own small way.

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