Archive for the ‘cider’ Category

11/18 ukcider

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From: Feed My Inbox <>
Date: 18 November 2011 07:58
Subject: 11/18 ukcider

Bramley Apples and Bramley Apple Tree Pruning
November 17, 2011 at 5:09 PM

The subject of making cider from Bramley apples and how to set about pruning Bramley apple trees keeps coming up. Here’s a recent video from Hermitage Farm which bemoans the lack of current demand for Bramley apples. It’s perhaps surprising, since Bramleys are the best known and frequently the only known variety of cooking apples in the UK, but it must be the whole concept of cooking with apples which is falling into disuse heaven forbid.

Click here to view the embedded video.

Hermitage Farm‘s Bramley Apples

Here we are, five miles north of Hereford, in the middle of the organic Bramley apple harvest and the sad thing is that the bottom has dropped out of the Bramley apple market in the UK.

We are seeing Bramley apple trees being grubbed out, but what we need is a high profile celebrity chef to re-educate the British public about how to use Bramley cooking apples.

It has to be said though, that the French don’t even have a word for “cooking apples” there are many French varieties of apples and you can either eat them or cook with them. Or make cider with them of course!

Some advice about pruning Bramley Apple trees and grafting:

If you have a large Bramley apple tree, maybe up to 70 years old and it’s taking up a lot of space where you might prefer to have several other different varieties of apple trees growing, then you might want to consider grafting or top working the old Bramley tree after a severe prune but there are limitations to what can be done in such circumstances. For example it may seem a good idea to graft several different types of scions onto the same family tree or stock, but this can cause problems with differentiating growth rates of the various grafts, and also necessitate removing as many as possible of the original Bramley buds when they come through in spring, which is hardly practical on a large tree. A very large very old tree may present some challenges and you certainly
should leave ‘nurse branches’ but it is achievable, and if the tree is
lively you may be surprised how strongly the scions grow way.

Top working or grafting is not so difficult really, but the timing of the various prunes is actually quite crucial.

You need to cut the desired type of scion wood in late winter one season, then store it carefully, and do the grafting onto the old Bramley apple tree sometime between bud burst and blossom time. It’s well worth practicing first on some less valuable trees in order to make mistakes, learn, and then get the right cuts that work for your orchard.

Bramley Apples and Bramley Apple Tree Pruning BramleyAppleTree 199x300

Bramley Apple Tree


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29 new varieties of English cider apples

The new apple varieties are Lizzy; Prince William; Amelia; Amanda; Jenny; Hastings; Connie; Helen’s Apple; Three Counties; Jane; Tina; Early Bird; Vicky; Naomi; Nicky; Angela; Gilly; Willy; Joanna; Maggie; Hannah; Jean; Sally; Fiona; Shamrock; Tracey; Eleni; Betty and Debbie.

New cider apple varieties

BBC R4 Food and Farming Awards Henney’s Cider

Well Done Mike Henney of Henney's Cider for being a finalist.


Mike Henney (Henney's Cider)

Mike Henney started making cider as a hobby in his airing cupboard in 1996. He now produces over 200,000 gallons of his high-quality product. He maintains traditional methods of production, using genuine cider apple varieties from local Herefordshire growers. His four varieties of cider are available in leading supermarkets.

Results will be announced on November 24th at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham.

The Awards programme will be on Radio 4 at 9am on November 26th.

Good Luck for the final!

Recipe: Pork Chops with Cider and Apples

This is the American version of Pork with cider and apples.

Pork Chops with Cider and Apples

Makes 4 servings

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 center-cut boneless pork chops, 6-7 ounces each

3/4 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper

2 shallots, minced

2 cups hard or sweet cider

1 cup dried apple slices

3 tablespoons whipping cream

2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard

1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; season chops with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and pepper to taste. Cook chops in skillet, turning once, until browned, and almost cooked through. Remove from skillet.

2. Add shallots to skillet; cook over medium heat until translucent, 2 minutes. Add cider; heat to a simmer. Add apple slices; cook until apples are soft and cider is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Stir in cream, mustard and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of the salt; cook until slightly thickened. Taste sauce for seasoning. Return chops to skillet; heat until chops are cooked through.

Nutrition information

Per serving: 441 calories, 46 percent of calories from fat, 23 g fat, 8 g saturated fat, 105 mg cholesterol, 31 g carbohydrates, 28 g protein, 729 mg sodium, 2 g fiber

The basic method is sound, and you can make variations with different types of cider, cuts of pork and whether or not to add cream for example. Seems a lot of people have discovered how well pork and cider go together, but there’s alwas someone else looking for a recipe. Do you like following recipes or just cook pork and cider with the best ingredients you can find?

Vintage Apple Fruit Crusher Scatter For Cider Making

This is a vintage fruit crushing machine, mostly useful as an item of interest although it’s likely you could just about get it to work as an apple scratter for making cider

When you first start looking up information on how to make cider you may come across machines like these, but they’re more like collectors’ items really. You can start off with something easier and smaller.

Ross On Wye Cider Festival

Video from three days at the Ross On Wye Cider Festival

Britain’s Oldest Cidermaker Frank Naish

A picture of Frank Naish from Naish Cider which James Russel has used as an illustration in his Naked Guide to Cider Book

We need to document all of these old cidermakers while they are still with us.