Cracking an old cider recipe

For Jim Zellerman, growing apples isn't just a part of his business ... it's part of his family history.

"It was founded by my grandparents in 1930," Zellerman said. "We're the third generation, I have two brothers and the three of us are now Edgewood Orchards."

Part of taking over a family business is carrying on its tradition. For the orchard it's making cider.

"This Saturday will be the first day of cider," Zellerman said. "We make the best cider anywhere. I look forward to seeing people walk up to this spicket with a smile on their face."

What you'll get when pull down on that spicket is a unique blend of apples churned into cider, but if you want to know the recipe don't bother asking.

"Well that's a secret," Zellerman said.

What we can know is the process the apple goes through to get from the orchard to your cup.

First is picking ...

"Certainly good quality apples is one of the key ingredients in great cider," Zellerman said. "We pick into binds that hold about 800 pounds of apples. We put about 15 of those or about 12 thousand pounds of apples go into one patch of cider."

Those hand selected apples are then washed and put through a grinder.

"The apples are ground up into a very juicy pulp and then they go via a pump to the cider press," Zellerman said.

The press squeezes out all the apple juice.

The juice then goes to temporary holding tanks and is put through an ultraviolet process.

"Pasteurization effects the flavor of cider while the ultraviolet process that we chose meets the same requirements and makes good quality cider that has all the wonderful flavor," Zellerman said.

After that, the cider is jugged and ready for you to buy, but don't look for the recipe on the carton.

"I'm not telling you, only my family and my dog Cooper know the recipe," Zellerman said.

How about them apples? Looks like we'll never know.