It's Mid April and the fields are full of them right now, so what better than to try and make Dandelion wine.
If the weather is meant to be good, so get out there and get picking. Even better, drag some children along and get them to pick them for you as they are so low to the ground - both the flowers and the kids :o)
Now, I've not brewed this before, so I have asked for some help from some others that have and made a recipe that should give great results. Fingers crossed. Feel free to brew it up and let me know how yours turns out.
Tradition says it's best to pick them on St Georges Day, so fingers crossed for some sunny weather.
Ingredients for 1 gallon
2/3rds carrier bag full of Dandelion Heads
800g Brewing sugar
500g Granulated sugar
4.5 litres (8 pints) Boiling Water
250ml White Wine Enhancer
2 Lemons - Zest & Juice
1 tsp Pectolase
1 tea bag
1tsp White Wine Yeast
1tsp Yeast Nutrient
- - -
We only want the petals
1 - Pluck the petals from the head and place in a brewing bucket. We don't want stalk.
2 - Pour over 8 pints of boiling water, cover and leave till 40°C
3 - Stir in the 1tsp of pectolase, cover and leave for 48 hours. This will help bring the colour & flavour out of the petals.4 - Strain the infusion to remove the petals (remembering you need to keep the liquid)
5 - Add the sugar to the liquid and stir to dissolve.
6 - Add the juice & zest of the lemons, the tea bag & the white wine enhancer and stir.
8 - Use a hydrometer and take a Specific Gravity reading and keep this safe.
9 - Check the temperature and when around 18 - 22°C add the yeast nutrient and white wine yeast.
10 - Put the lid on loosely and transfer to somewhere warm (approx 20°C) for 7 days to ferment.
11 - Siphon into a demi-john and keep at around 20°C to allow for the the fermentation to complete. This can take up to 4 weeks.
14 - Once the fermentation is complete, rack the wine off the sediment into a clean, sterilised demi-john. Add 1 crushed Campden tablet and stir.
15 - Refit the airlock and leave to clear.
16 - Once clear, it's time to bottle. Leave for 3 months in the bottle to condition, then chill, pop one open fingers crossed it should be delicious.
As it's the first time I have made it, let me know how yours turns out. In 6 months time, drop me a line with your pics and how you got on and we'll compare results...