I’m pretty exicted about this, because it marks a new page in my quest for self-sufficiency (that sounds pretty awesome, doesn’t it?).
When I stumbled upon this blog post about how to make your own apple cider vinegar I *might* have giggled with glee. I’m not sure what it is about this that makes me so happy- it’s probably finding a use for something that I would normally throw in the garbage. Finding ways to take something that is normally expendable and common, and make it into something that I would normally buy anyway excites me a little bit too much.
Essentially all that is required is peels and cores from some apples that you’ve set aside after cooking something (we made apple sauce). You put these scraps in a bowl, fill it with water enough to cover the peels by about an inch, mix in 1/4 C of sugar, then weight the apple-stuff down with a plate. Cover up the bowl in order to keep bugs away, and let it sit for a week. Mold will form quickly (mine already has), but all you have to do is spoon it off. After a week strain out the apple stuff and put it in a jar, seperating the lid from the jar with a piece of cheese cloth (to stop the lid from corroding from the acidity). Leave it alone for 6 weeks (labeling it might be a good idea), and then you should have apple cider vinegar. I plan to pasteurize the vinegar by boiling it before canning.
This is not only awesome because you’re getting something for nothing (essentially), but it’s also great if you think about all the amazing uses for apple cider vinegar. In no particular order here’s what we have used it for in the past, or what friends use it for:
1) Removing stains from your teeth (dilute a bit and dip your toothbrush in it as you brush)
2) To clean your hair (diluted)
3) To clean your face (very diluted- I’ve never tried this one because of my aforementioned sensitive skin).
4) To clean your house (kitchen, bathrooms, etc)
5) Add it to your bath (about 1/2 C) if you have a sunburn
Those are just a couple I can think of off the top of my head- pretty good for something that would have wound up in the garbage!