Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Show mercy to pineapples, make tepache


For all the times I’ve thought to myself ,“I could do that”, this was for then.

It was, I admit, also a measure taken in desperation; desperate to counter the rain and the way it was flattening our spirits. My sister had come to spend 10 days of engineering picnic baskets to bikes and jumping off boats. Instead, she spent 8 of them trapped indoors on a roll mat.

What to do? Finally do what I said I could if everyone else was: put something in a jar and ferment it.

So we made tepache, Mexican moonshine made of the skins and hearts of a pineapples, water, cinnamon and brown sugar. We put it in a big pickle jar (what else?), sealed it, put a cute sticker on it and waited for the wild yeasts to come. Then we poured it over ice, sat back on the roll mat and watched the rains.


Note on the taste: 

Tepache turns out to be pretty damn sweet and after a few days of experimenting, we figured out the following:
  1. It’s best mixed with a Mexican beer
  2. Unless you like the sweet thing and then you can add rum or tequila
  3. The longer you leave it, the more effervescent it becomes, buzzy, malty. I never read the last step of the instructions below until I wrote them out now, 7 days later and mine’s still not strained, not in the fridge, definitely still fermenting and I’m still alive. So go for it.
How to make it?

Pour out 350g dark brown soft sugar into a pan with 1.5 litres water and a cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Let cool.

Once cooled, pour into a large glass jar or jug or, do like the Mexicans do and beat the hipsters to it: pour into an earthenware pot. Remove the cinnamon stick, add core and rind of 1 very ripe pineapple cut into chunks, cover with cling film and leave somewhere warm. 

After a day, bubbles will start to rise to the surface. Leave for 2-3 days and then strain into a jug, cover with cling film, and store in the fridge. 

Drink with ice, bubbly things, alcoholic things or all three.


*Recipe from a crumpled article from Crumbs, a great little magazine from Bristol that my sister saves for me to read. This time all she'd brought was this recipe.



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