My new passion is fermentation and all the goodness we can create with just a little time. Our little apple tree has produced several bushels of organic apples (no spraying here!) and this year while processing these golden green orbs into applesauce, I realized that the peel/core palooza could be made into apple cider vinegar. There are several sites that share variations of the same apple cider recipe and I liked this one best.
Basically, throw the apple leftovers into a jar, the wider the mouth the better, add enough sugar/water to cover the peels (1/4 c sugar for every 1 quart of water), cover with a clean, breathable cloth, and leave at room temperature for a week to ferment. I used a plate and weight, like what is done for sauerkraut, just to help keep all the leavings under water.
After a week, taste (should be appley sweet) and assuming this is the case (appley sweet) remove the peels/cores, and allow the liquid to ferment for another 2-3 weeks (stirring occasionally) until the vinegar taste is to your liking. You may now transfer to clean containers for use. Store in a cool, dry, dark place.
We use this for salads though it is important to note that if you are going to make pickles with your vinegar, you’ll need to get some litmus paper and make sure that it is at 5% acidity. Linda Ziedrich wrote a great article about how you could still use 4.3% acidity (as found in rice vinegar) and be safe to make pickles and such. Litmus paper can be ordered from Amazon, swimming pool supply stores, & health food stores to name a few.