I have never claimed to be a very sophisticated kinda gal....
Gourmet, I am not.....
When it comes to food I like good ole homemade stick-to-your-ribs comfort food.
When it comes to drink I like good old fashioned sweet tea, coffee, Chai Tea and Diet Coke.
(whenever I can make it into the city of course its Starbucks, Mocha Frappuccino, caramel macchiato, pumpkin spice Latte, sooo many yummy fattening drinks from there!)
And wine? well .. lets just say I'm a cheap wino. Now, don't get me wrong, I drink alcohol occasionally, like maybe once a month or so. I don't like beer, Mixed drinks are ok, but give me a glass of wine and I'm happy. Try as I might, I just don't like the "good stuff" The extra-dry expensive wines are wasted on me. Give me a good ole $6 bottle of sweet wine with a twist-off top and I'm good to go!
Even better than any store bought wine is homemade wine!! And today.. I'm gonna tell you how I make it! I started making wine 2 years ago. I bought all the books and all the "stuff" you need to make homemade wine and Homemade Mead. But I still found the whole thing pretty complicated, you had to add yeasts, and rennet tablets etc....
Then I stumbled upon what they call "Prison Wine" Prison Wine... that sounds easy enough! It sounded cheap.... I knew it had great potential. There are only three ingredients in Prison wine.
Anybody can do that!!!
Here we go.
Take a large (holds MORE than a gallon) container (I prefer Glass) with a snug lid (doesn't have to be air-tight as a matter of fact I like it NOT to be air tight, more on why later)
1 gallon water (I like to use 1 gallon cheap bottled drinking water)
6 Cups sugar
6 heaping cups prepared fruit
(prepared = picked through, washed, and cut into chunks, berries can be left whole)
***IMPORTANT!!*** you Must make sure your container is clean!! I wash it thoroughly then pour in one Teaspoon of bleach... fill it up with hot water and drain.
- Dump 6 cups of sugar into your container.
- Pour almost all of the gallon of water into the container.
- Stir till sugar is dissolved.
- Dump in your fruit chunks.
- Wrap your lid/container in plastic wrap to keep out those pesky fruit flies!
- Set your container on the counter, or wherever you won't forget about it. (NOT in direct sunlight or it'll wash out any color and get it too hot)
- Stir and/or Swirl every day for 3o days (a little longer is fine its very forgiving just NO less than 30 days)
- discard your fruit pulp and strain your wine (I use several layers of cheesecloth or a jelly bag).
- Bottle or "Rack" your wine into CLEAN bottles, and let it set for at least 6 months in a cool dark place... this will make approx 6 bottles of wine.
- Enjoy your homemade wine!!
The reason I don't use air-tight lids is the fact that your wine-in-the-making will be fizzy while it "cooks" and build up pressure. But the plastic wrap is very important!! Or you'll have to throw away your batch when fruit flies invade! (don't ask me how I know this)
There will come a time during the fermentation process when you stir/swirl it it will be fizzy and bubble up quite a bit.. this is why you want your container to be bigger than you think you need or it might make a BIG sticky mess (don't ask me how I know this!).
If you rack it too soon you'll have "sparkling" wine. I like sparkling wine.. but sometimes it makes your corks Pop out and fly across the room. So, if it's too bubbly, let it go a little bit longer and store those filled bottles sitting upright and NOT on their side or you could have a mess! (don't ask me how I know this)
Do NOT I mean NOT mess with the ratio of fruit/sugar thinking you'll make it better/dryer/sweeter. It wont work. (don't ask me how I know this)
You do NOT want to eat the fruit that comes out of the wine it does NOT taste good..... All the good stuff is now in the wine. BUT if you have pigs.. give it to them... Ever seen a drunk pig?? Its worth making the wine just to see that!! (don't ask me how I know this)
I have used quart canning jars when I ran out of bottles... works great and adds to the redneckish properties of homemade wine
You do NOT have to be picky cutting your fruit. It breaks down during the process anyway. I cut my big strawberries in half.. apples and peaches & watermelon into large chunks, blueberries were left whole. (in the pic I am ready to rack my new batch of Strawberry wine)
I bought my purdy blue and green bottles on Ebay!
I have use this recipe/technique with several fruits....
Apple = first batch was WAY sour. don't know what I did to it. 2nd time was very very yummy!
Peach = yummm! even better after it aged a year!!
Watermelon = made a very pretty pale pink wine!
Blueberry= Amazing!! (that's what is in the glass in the picture)
and the all-time winner of my poll of friends/family is....
Strawberry!! it was a little fizzy/sparkling, sweet but not way too sweet, perfect!!
any questions? feel free to ask!!
Go Forth And Make Wine!!
Your friends will thank you!!