So today I thought I would make some homemade grape juice. Which I know, you are probably thinking to yourself, why would I make it when I can just buy it in the store! Well, the explanation is kind of a long one, but a good story none the less. It actually begins a few years ago when I was shopping at Lowes. I was looking at all the bushes and tress for sale in their garden section and I noticed a grape vine plant. It had the most beautiful leaves on it, and I thought it would look quite lovely growing along side my house. So I bought it and planted it, never thinking that it would actually produce any real substantial fruit. I basically ignored it for the first few years it lived along side my house. I admired its beautiful leaves and that was about it. Fast forward a year or two and all of a sudden it had a bounty of grapes hanging on it!! I couldn’t believe the amount of grapes this one vine produced. It was about the beginning of September I believe, when I picked two huge bowls full. At the time I had no idea what to do with them, so I washed them and then froze them. Fast forward again another year and a half, I am finally getting around to making grape juice. I do remember that my grapevine is the concord grape variety, and therefore very suited for making juice.
First wash your grapes throughly, either store bought or fresh picked. Mine were frozen for over a year, so that is always an option too! Next place them in a pot to cook the juices out of the grapes. I set mine to medium heat and used a masher to work the grapes into a pulp as they cooked. Once they came to a simmer I let them cook for about 10 mins, just to make sure they had released all their juice. Remove from heat and let stand about 5 mins.
Next start removing the pulp from the pot and place into a food mill to separate the juice from the skins and seeds even more. I did mine in small batches and removed excess pulp to make sure each turn of the mill was extracting the most juice.
Once you have extracted all the juices from the pulp you are left with amazing fresh grape juice! Now there might still be some tiny bits of pulp and particles left in the juice. If you are the type of person who doesn’t like any pulp in their juice, pour it through cheese cloth to strain any remaining particles. Once that is done it is ready to pour into a jar or glass to drink! The juice can be refrigerated up to a week or frozen for later use. I personally like to have mine with a little vodka and ice. There really isn’t anything like fresh juice! Enjoy, my friends!!