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  1.  (3578.81)
    Ginger beer recipe.

    You need:

    Yeast, ground ginger, sugar, water.

    Plant:

    ½ teaspoon dried yeast
    1 rounded teaspoon ground ginger
    1 rounded teaspoon sugar
    1 cup lukewarm water

    Method:

    Mix all together in a jar, cover with a piece of muslin and secure with a rubber band.

    Each day for the next week, add 1 teaspoon sugar and 1 teaspoon ground ginger.

    To make up the Ginger Beer:

    For the syrup, mix together:

    4 cups of sugar
    24 cups of warm water
    ½ cup strained lemon juice
    then:

    Strain the ginger beer plant through two layers of muslin.

    Pour the resulting liquid into the syrup and mix well.

    Pour into clean plastic soft drink bottles and tightly screw on lids. The ginger beer should be ready to drink by the end of a week.

    Divide the plant left in the muslin into two halves. Place one of these in a glass jar with a cup of warm water. Then next day start feeding as before, that is, one teaspoon of ginger and one of sugar each day. The other half of the plant can be discarded, or you can have two plants 'on the go'.
    • CommentAuthorlooneynerd
    • CommentTimeJan 17th 2009
     (3578.82)
    My extended family are from the backwoods of southern Kentucky/ Northern Tennessee. The only thing they know how to do is still whiskey and 'shine. And I don't recommend trying that... I've seen a lot of barns explode in my day!
    • CommentAuthorChrisD
    • CommentTimeJan 17th 2009
     (3578.83)
    My roommate and I just racked our first gallon of mead. Gave it a taste and it was good, albeit still in need of aging, with a helluva a kick. We used the recipe from stormthecastle.com (thanks @JShilpetski!) just to try it out with as little initial investment as possible. We're gonna let it age till my birthday in March and then see what it's like. If its good we plan on making a lot more and investing in proper equipment for both wine and beer making.
  2.  (3578.84)
    So how did the tea wine turn out anyone?
    •  
      CommentAuthorNygaard
    • CommentTimeJan 18th 2009
     (3578.85)
    @christobel - I vaguely remember contributing my inherited recipes for mead-flavouring using various types of woods and seeds back in the Engine days. Mr. Ellis' mockery still burns, oh yes. But the whisky-drinkers are on my side. One day we will show them all. :)

    From what I've seen so far, I wouldn't try making tea wine if you paid me for it. I'd sooner eat the bloom off a tub of half-fermented sauerkraut.

    Though, come to think of it, something mildly sweet and alcoholic with a green tea flavour could be interesting...
  3.  (3578.86)
    Well, my girlfriend and I made mead. It's finished fermenting, but still needs to sit for a while to get real tasty (apparently).

    Smelled pretty fuckin' alcoholic when we were racking it, so we got that part right at least.
    • CommentAuthorPooka
    • CommentTimeJan 18th 2009
     (3578.87)
    I've got four an a half gallons of grape juice sitting in my kitchen waiting to be made into wine...I've had them for the last six months though and just haven't been in the mood to start it up...
    Maybe I should do that tomarrow...
    I love home made wine...I love wine in general, but home made is usually sweeter and more alchoholic...
    • CommentAuthorlooneynerd
    • CommentTimeJan 18th 2009
     (3578.88)
    There are so many breweries, wineries, and distilleries in Kentucky... I love living here sometimes...

    Does anybody have any good micro-brewing recipes for beer?
    • CommentAuthorChrisD
    • CommentTimeJan 20th 2009
     (3578.89)
    @Nygaard

    Damn the naysayers!

    I wasn't present for the Engine so I missed out on your recipes. Care to elaborate?
    • CommentAuthorPooka
    • CommentTimeJan 21st 2009
     (3578.90)
    @looneynerd What part are you abouts good sir? I'm kinda close to Lexington...
    Mmm...Blackberry wine....mMmmMmMmmm.....
    •  
      CommentAuthorFauxhammer
    • CommentTimeJan 21st 2009
     (3578.91)
    @ looneynerd: Go get yourself The Complete Joy of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian. It's got everything you need to get started.

    Also: go with growlers or a kegging system. I've pretty much quit brewing because bottling is such a pain in the balls.
    •  
      CommentAuthorCamMc
    • CommentTimeJan 21st 2009
     (3578.92)
    @HylianHearts My batch was pretty much terrible. I don't have my exact recipe at work but I do remember what I want to change for next time.
    Mostly, the Champagne yeast was a big misstep. I did get it above 15% so that much I'm grateful for, but I don't think this is intended to be a very Dry wine. I'd like to find some corn sugar because I really don't like how fermented sucrose feels/tastes. Also SOME claim that I left it to brew too long, and while I'll humor them, I still feel the best cup of tea is one you forgot you were brewing and then find on the stove 5-10 minutes later.
  4.  (3578.93)
    Fridge Cider.

    My friends and I used to brew this to get wasted on, back when we were too young to legally buy booze. Take care because the bottles WILL explode violently if you don't let the gas out.

    2 X 2-litre plastic Coke bottles with screw-on lids
    2 litres of apple or grape juice
    2 cups sugar
    Baking yeast

    Pour a litre of fruit juice into the bottom of each Coke bottle.
    Add a cup of sugar and half a teaspoon of baking yeast to each bottle, then screw on the lid and shake well.
    Fill each bottle to about 5 cm from the top with fairly warm water and screw on the lid.
    Leave in a warm place for 3-4 days, making sure to unscrew the lid a couple of times a day and slowly let out the gas.
    Leave in the fridge for another 3-4 days. Tastes like sweet fruity soda, tends to have about a 5% alcohol content.
    •  
      CommentAuthorthryn
    • CommentTimeFeb 6th 2009
     (3578.94)
    @nygaard -- it exists.

    http://www.suntory.com/zen/recipes/index.html
    •  
      CommentAuthorNygaard
    • CommentTimeFeb 9th 2009
     (3578.95)
    Oh - nearly forgot this one.

    You can add stuff to brews in several ways - the best way for most spices and stuff would be by boiling it directly in the wort, like hops, or in a cotton bag. If you can sterilize it, you can also get additives in at various stages in the fermentaton or aging process.

    With a strong wine yeast, four or five kilos of honey added to 25 liters of water makes a mead wort. Mark the height of the water before adding mead and additives, then boil down to that height. One classic recipe is spiced with caravay seeds. Different types of honey or other sugars makes for different flavours. Fruits, citrus and cinnamon are popular. In addition, all kinds of medicinal herbs that can take boiling can go into it, as well as in old-style medicinal beer. One or two additives is probably the limit if you want a clear flavour, though. Examples include absinthe herb, angelica archangelica (the genuine viking age additive), juniper berries, rosemary or claimed hangover remedies like creeping cinquefoil and mead herb.

    A more exotic variant use wood as a spice. Birch goes into a few traditonal norwegian dishes, and you can buy blocks of it specially prepared for the purpose in the shops here. I'm told sap-rich twig bundles, discs of young branches and so on works just as well. Then there's the wood called "tyri" (the raw material for tar), which is the resin-saturated heartwood of pine trees which died and dried out on their roots. Lots of other woods will probably release interesting flavours as well. However, the original thread had some warnings - names and types of wood does not always translate between continents, and some, like herbs, are poisonous, or have undesireable effects (diuretic, abortificant, diarrhea...)