This homemade apple cider is made with honeycrisp apples, spices and vanilla. It's incredible served hot or cold, especially with a pour of bourbon!
10whole honeycrisp apples,cut in half, seeds and stems removed
1vanilla bean pod,split open
⅓cupof your favorite bourbon
caramel for drizzling
Combine the apples, sugar, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, vanilla pod and allspice in a large stock pot and cover with water. You want the water to be about 2 inches higher than the apples. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce it to a simmer and cook for 1 hour uncovered. After 1 hour, you can mash some of the apples (they should just fall apart). Cover the pot and simmer for another 2 hours. Make sure it is completely covered, or else your liquid will evaporate!
After 2 hours, let the mixture cool slightly. Strain it through a fine mesh sieve (I did so twice) to remove the solids. Some of the solids may remain. You can strain it through cheesecloth one more time if desired. At this point, you can put it in a new pot or transfer it to a large jug and stir in the bourbon. You can also add the bourbon on a cup--by-cup basis - I like to start with ½ to 2 ounce per glass. Serve it hot with cinnamon sticks or cold over ice.
Store the cider in a sealed container or jar in the fridge. It will stay good for about a week!