By Mary Tucker
2011 has turned out to be a bountiful apple year. Everywhere I drive I see trees loaded with apples of all sizes and colors, red, green and yellow. Driving to Andes and back I’ve counted at least five trees that still have lots of apples that could be picked. I have enough so I’ll leave them for others who want apples and for the four-legged creatures. Apple trees along Fall Clove Road, on Cabin Hill Road, on the way to Andes and to Delhi, APPLE TREES EVERYWHERE!
Apples have many uses, good for eating just as they are, out of hand, and what can be better than apple pie? They make good sauce for canning or freezing, or can be peeled, cored, sliced and frozen for use later in the winter and can also be used for making apple bread, apple cakes, kuchen, juice and cider.
Saturday, October 8th, turned out to be a nice sunny day for the Little family reunion and a cider making day at the Cabin Hill Church. The reunion started at noon with a dish to pass lunch, an auction, then cider-making. My friend and neighbor, Betty invited me to join in the fun. Members of the congregation brought bags of apples from trees around their homes to be used for cider. The men shook the big tree behind the church. What a big pile of apples landed in the grass under the tree! There is a lot involved in making cider: dumping the bags of apples in the press, turning the press handle to get the cider out, but many hands made light work. Betty and I worked on sorting the apples, picking out the bad ones, removing the stems and leaves before the apples were put through the cider press.
After the apples were pressed and the cider bottled, everyone shared cider and doughnuts. Half gallon bottles of cider were available for those who wanted some to take home. There is nothing as good as fresh, unadulterated cider.
And more APPLES. Early in October, I had picked drops from the apple tree across the way, sorted, washed and cooked them. I put them through the Foley Food Mill and ended up with six pints of applesauce. Later in the week my daughter Kathy and her 2 children came to pick apples from a tree near my house on Fall Clove. Climbing on a lower branch she shook down the apples. The grass under the tree kept the apples from being bruised. She has been making apple butter, applesauce, dried apple rings and keeping the nicer ones for eating. If apples are stored in a cool, dry place they keep well for several months.~