Here is the recipe for making your own home brew “Fruit Champagne”.
I am sort of grateful for lockdown as it brought the Bubble, Bubble Toil & Trouble back into my super sanitised kitchen, bringing a lot of creative Googling and (sometimes explosive) experiments.
There is something primally pleasing about naturally fermented bubbles!
The instagram post below resulted in many requests for the recipe. So here it is.
1 Kg fresh fruit
(I used a mix of apples, grapes, 1 peeled lemon, ½ thumb Ginger & a sprig of Mint)
4 Litres of filtered water
2 Cups of sugar
2 Cups of Whey (Milk I left outside for 3 days and strained – you can make cottage cheese from the solids)
Wash and chop or crush (grapes) the fruit coarsely (roughly 2 cm x 2 cm -ish)
Place or stuff it into a glass jar or food graded plastic bottle
(I poured 1 Litre out of a 5 Litre Water bottle and used the bottle and water)
Dissolve the sugar in the water
Add the course pieces of fruit
Add the whey
Shake it up
Seal with a ferment top or a piece of cling film (or the object in the photo (I cannot name it here as Google will take my ‘child-friendly’ badge away : ) with a pinprick sized hole in it to allow air to escape but not enter.
If you use a wide-rimmed jar, place a sealed plastic bag with some water in the neck to prevent the fruit to drift to the top and to keep fruit flies out. Cover with a cloth for the same reason and place the jar in a warmish darkish place for 3 to 7 days.
The warmer the shorter. Too cold will stifle the ferment and too hot might kill the microbes. Roughly 40 degrees is a good temperature for the impatient among us. I place a hot plate upright about 15 cm away and cover my babies with towels to keep the heat in. #LockdownMadness?
Strain the liquid through a cheesecloth and set the solids aside for your compost heap.
Bottle and seal it for the second fermentation. Flip-top bottles such as Grolsch Beer bottles work best.
Let it stand for at least 3 days before checking for tiny bubbles inside when you tilt it.
Once you see a row of tiny bubbles along the inside when you tilt it, place it in the fridge for an hour before opening it very carefully over the sink or outside.
Just like soda water, you may have to open and close a couple of times to let some carbon dioxide escape to prevent the ‘champagne’ hitting the ceiling.
Pour into an elegant flute, fetch your book, kick off your shoes, puff the pillows and settle in for a treat.