Although I take 1000mg Vitamin C supplement every morning, I prefer to get my vitamins from food sources. In winter this can be a bit trickier since our local fresh fruits tend to be limited to apples. This is one good reason for squirreling away summer’s berries and rose hips. Broccoli, carrots and kale are other fresh sources during Skagit’s winters.
One of my favorite tools for processing large amounts of fruit relatively easily is a contraption called a steam-juicer. They’re simple to use and indispensable if you want to make large quantities of juice concentrate or like to make jellies without cranking your arm off with a food mill. I love using them for apples since I don’t yet have a cider press. 🙂 I just chunk the apples leaving cores, peels and stems on and in about an hour or so, I have freshly steamed apple juice and a mass of pulp for the compost.
I always process all my juices without sugar so I can sweeten them for jelly, juice or wine as required later. My favorite bottles are saline irrigation continers from the hospital since they freeze well and are nicely square. Since they’re only lightly used and made of polypropylene, I get a bit of feel-good recycling out of the deal. I have also juiced into quart jars and then canned the results.
This batch was ~25 lbs. of blue elderberries that we picked on our way home from Eastern Washington. I hope to get an opportunity to pick rose hips sometime soon. The steam-juicer makes processing of those much easier since you don’t have to work so hard to remove the hairy choke. Maybe I can even beg some grapes off one of our wonderful local wineries …