Crab apple wine

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holy crabapple tree

 

This tree, laden with crab apples, seemed to be calling to me.  It’s right outside the Center for International studies school where I sometimes walk the dogs, so I called the school this week to make sure that the tree hadn’t been sprayed and that I was allowed to harvest fruit fromit.  As both proved true, I headed out this morning.  I like this photo because I couldn’t really see as I was taking it, so it has a sort of holy glow to it.

picking crabapplesAnd here’s a nice one I took while I was picking, because it’s really quite pretty.  You can see the school behind the tree.

mom and ginger picking crabapples  Mom and Ginger came along to help.  Ginger proved slightly less than helpful, though, wanting more walking and less standing still in uninteresting places, so they left after a bit.  Mom got 1 lb., 10.5 oz. of fruit.  I managed a kind of insane 8 lbs., 6.6 oz., but after I took out all the wormy ones, I just had about 9 lbs. left.  Half of that will be for crab apple, butter, I think.

The other half, though, the reason I wanted this harvest to begin with, will be wine.  I used the recipe from Winemaker’s Handbook, the little purple booklet I somehow have 3 copies of (after giving one to Sarah & Tom next door).  I think I inadvertently added an extra pint of water but I’m not sure.  Anyway, as of about 2:00 this afternoon, crabapple wine it is on the Campden tablet, and everything but the yeast is in.  I shredded the apples in the food processor with the grating attachment because the recipe calls for chopping them and that sounded like it would take at least all of today and possibly most of tomorrow too.  My other adjustment was in the raisins.  The recipe calls for a pound of golden, but I found I only had 12 oz., so the rest is dried currants– not real currants, but the small raisins that get called dried currants, for reasons I do not fathom.  I haven’t taken the specific gravity yet because the recipe just calls for dumping in the sugar, so it won’t have dissolved yet.  I’ll take it in 24 hours, when I’m due to remove the fruit pulp.  (I may actually ferment on, though, since I do want this to taste at least a little of crab apple.  Maybe just another 24 hours after I pitch the yeast.)

The dogs now tell me it’s time to play.  This is definitely good, as Rose has just had her few remaining teeth taken out, and spent yesterday feeling sleepy and sore.  She seems quite happy now, though, so I shall go entertain them, and maybe go get more sugar so I can do that crab apple butter.

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