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How a steam juicer can help you process your home produce
Use a steam juicer to preserve your precious home-grown fruit
If you have a garden, you are likely to have a fruit tree. Whether the popular apple, or apricot, peach, plum, cherry or pear, and many others, all of these trees in their prime will produce far more fruit than the average family can eat fresh. This leaves a few choices. You can give away or sell excess produce, or you can preserve the excess fruit for your own use at a later date. If you are like me you prefer to keep what you can of your special home-grown produce. After all, it was you who lovingly tended to your garden and fed, watered and pruned the tree. Sure, you could get a few pennies selling the fruit, but in reality it's worth more than just money. Just imagine instead having bottles of homemade fruit juice from your own garden fruits, jams and jellies, preserved fruits in tall glass canning jars, and dried fruit pieces for placing in your cereal or muesli in the mornings. A delightful thought, I think you will agree. It's not for no reason that for generations 'the family jar' was considered an essential part of every family's pantry. We're going to discuss the juice that is made with a steam juicer; homemade bottled fruit juice.
It is healthful to drink genuine homemade fruit juice. You can grow your own fruit organically, thus avoiding all the toxic sprays and poisons that are used in big business farming. You can hand-choose the fruits that you wish to use in your preserves, unlike a factory, where fruits good bad and ugly will roll down a chute without anyone to spot the fruits that really shouldn't make it into juice (but do). You can use a steam juicer to concentrate your fruits to just the right amount and bottle them in attractive bottles with the seals and lids that you find most practical. You control every step of the process, and at the end, you get to drink your precious homemade fruit juice all year round. Done properly, your bottled juice will keep for years. Not that you necessarily want to store it that long, but it truly is a way of preserving the summer taste of homegrown fruit. How many other ways do you know to bottle the scent and taste of summer? You can't do it by putting out a jar to catch the sunlight...
In the dead of winter when all is grey and you're feeling pretty drab, open up a bottle of homemade cherry juice or blueberry juice. The thought alone is enough to cheer me up, and where I'm writing it's not even winter yet. There's something potent about the aroma and taste of real fruit juice, that nothing can compare to. A splash of it in casseroles, stews or other dishes will give depth to the flavour of the meat and gravy, and make your family and guests smile.
To make steam juice using a steam juicer, it is not hard at all. Firstly you choose a steam juicer that suits you. The best juicers are stainless steel. Aluminium steam juicers can be obtained but with the recent news that aluminium may be linked to Alzheimer's, I'd steer clear of it. Stainless is more durable anyway and less likely to react with acids in the fruit.
The steam juicer sits atop your stove. It has several tiers. You pour water into the bottom tier, sit the steamer tier on next, then sit the fruit tier on top and place the fruit into it. The water at the bottom simmers, the steamer tier fills with steam, and the juice from the fruit slowly seeps out of the fruit and drips down into the collection area (usually in the middle tier - a ring around the inside of the steam juicer will allow the juice to pool without obstructing the upward movement of the steam). A pipe and a tap come out of this juice collection area and you can fill clean, sterilised bottles straight from this pipe. The first bottles will obviously be the tastiest and nicest. As you go, the fruit will be juiced out and the subsequent bottled juice will be paler, less tasty and maybe even look a bit grey. This is still OK but obviously less nutritious and flavoursome.
Anyway, that is how to use a steam juice to make your home produce into attractive and tasty bottled juice concentrate for your family, to drink all year round. Let's grab a steam juicer and start making juice now! Yum, I can smell it... sweet, apple and berry aromas... pear and cherry... blueberry and pear... just like my grandmother used to make.