It has been so weird and wonderful to have spent so many weeks working in the UK, and although I haven’t been in just one place it has still given me a chance to reignite old passions that have fallen by the wayside in the constant travelling. One of those is brewing my own wine and beer. It has been years since I made a home brew and I’d forgotten just how therapeutic and satisfying it is.
I was inspired while I was on the coast in North Wales by the brilliant yellow of the gorse setting off the aqua of the sea and I sourced some demijohns (glass fermentation jars) and started the process. Should hopefully be ready for christmas if all goes well. It took me a while to dig it out but here is my favourite gorse wine recipe. I didn’t have a fermentation bin or container I could use as one so am doing the whole process in the demijohns.
What you will need.
- Gloves, respect to anyone who can endure the pain without a thick pair of gardening gloves 🙂
- Plastic bags to collect the flowers in
Bring water to boil in a large pan. After removing twigs and bits of sheep wool add the flowers to the water and simmer for 15 minutes.
Take of the heat and stir in sugar until it is dissolved
Add raisins, orange and yeast nutrient
Poor into a clean fermenting tub, cover and allow to cool.
Once at room temperature add the yeast or your rehydrated yeast. Cover and leave for 4 days, stirring occasionally
Transfer to a sterilised demijohn using a sieve and a funnel, squeezing the liquid out of the solids. Top up with boiling water to fill demijohn if necessary. Fix bubble trap and leave until fermentation has ended or close to ending.
Rack off into a fresh demijohn and leave for another couple of months or until it is clear.
Bottle and wait. Around 9/10 months is a good length of time
It is possible to use dried yeast powder instead but it should be rehydrated first to proof it (make sure it's still alive). To do this place a packet of yeast into a glass jug and add a cup of warm, boiled water (35-40 degrees C). Cover with clingfilm and leave for 15 minutes. Add a teaspoonful of sugar, re cover and place in a warm area out of sunlight. After 30 minutes there should be a foamy head and is ready to be added to your wine.