Thursday, December 23, 2010

2011 Brewing Goals Part 1: Get Weird

So I found this great research paper titled, FERMENTED FRUTIS AND VEGETABLES. A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE off a link from Raj Apte's site. I had some time to read this lengthy paper on one of my flights from back from the East Coast.
It does a great job describing several different fermentable foods and beverages from around the world. It also goes into detail how these foods are created. The most informative part of the paper is explaining how to control the 6 main fermentation variables which are moisture (available water), oxygen concentration, temperature, nutrients, pH and inhibitors. It explains how to adjust these factors in order to get the desirable microbes to work for you. (Chapter 2).

This got me to thinking about having some fun with experimental batches of different fermented beverages from around the world. For most of these beverages I think the journey will be more fun than the destination. And who knows I might find some flavors I like and develop some helpful techniques. I am going try my hardest to make the following beverages as authentic as possible. In San Diego, we have a great diversity of ethnic stores (this is where the real adventure will be).

1. Banana Beer - Diluted banana juice and grains fermented with natural yeast from banana
2. Cashew Wine - Light Yellow wine using the apples from a Cashew tree 6%-12% with wine yeast
3. Tepache - Prepared from maize with other fruits added and open fermented, drank young
4. Colonche - Fermenting juice of the Prickly pear cactus (see post about juice)
5. Date Wine - Dates soaked in Boiling hot water in clay pots
6. Palm Wine - Fermented sap from various varieties depending on region
7. Pulque - National drink of Mexico (my neighbor) using different varieties of the Century plant
8. Muratina - Fermented from sugar and the muratina fruit in Kenya (we are traveling there next year)
9. Chicha - Popular South American drink using different types maize depending on region (great article)
I cannot promise I'll make all these, but who really lives up to their New Year's resolution. Most of these I will get done this summer when the fruit is available. And the wife and I are traveling to Egypt and Kenya this coming fall so I'll be doing some research there.

12/29/11 Update - EPIC FAIL - I did not complete any of these strange brews. But they are still on my list to brew. Better luck in 2012.

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