I tightened the lids on the scrumpy the other day. Today I checked them and they have a slight hiss as I release the lids. I think that scrumpy should be flat so I have *slighty* loosened them.
The scrumpy has sorted itself out somewhat, and now looks much more like something I would drink. It is two weeks in to its five week rest. The sediment has sunk to the bottom and it almost looks like something I might drink now. Patience…
I started the scrumpy a long time ago. About a month. Certainly before the blog. It is a funny sort of recipe and I am not sure about the results. I fiddled with the recipe because I was impatient and because it seemed to have no yeast involved at all. But what is left is sort of a rich apple soup that is alcoholic, tastes of apples and ginger and smells of bread. I really think I need to do my research in to scrumpy for next time.
Today I just bottled it off, filtering it through my bag. I used four 2l bottles but could only find three caps so used a brewing cap. The recipe said tighten them to the point where they are nearly tight, so I have done that. I am not convinced that this is going to be drinkable but I will keep following the recipe (apart from the added yeast and the blitzing of the apples).
I now have to leave them for five weeks before storing for another two months in a dark place. Maybe some magic will happen. I just checked them and they are still fermenting for sure. I’ve loosened the caps until I can hear the gas seeping out, then done them up a tiny bit. Maybe that is enough to keep the oxygen out.
It had all looked so easy. The recipe for the scrumpy said chop up some ginger, squeeze four lemons (I had two and a half, but hey, who’s counting?). Then add a kilo of sugar. Then add the strained apple juice to the mixture. I had carefully sterilised a fruit strainer (for making jam) and this was the mixture, ready to go and looking good. I had carefully sterilised two jugs and another tub to move things in to as well. I looked very organised when I got to the filtering stage, but as you can see, it all went a little pear shaped. Thankfully my wife ran to the rescue and I mopped the floor afterwards with a slightly embarrassed expression on my face.
(It was my intention to taste the blummin’ stuff at some point before putting it away to ferment, but I was in such high dudgeon that I forgot. I’ll just be patient…)
I wanted to make scrumpy, which I *think* is made from apples crushed with water as opposed to cider which is made from freshly squeezed apple juice. I went to the lovely local library and found BREWING: A step-by-ste guide to making beer, wine and cider by Jack thompson. I then followed the recipe for “Scrumpy Cider”. Well, I say followed, but as usual my impatience got the better of me. It says “roughly chop the apples” then cover with lots of boiling water, then “crush every few days”. I did this but nothing happened for 5 days. I imagined that the yeast had been fried. Maybe I should have let the water cool down.
Anyhow, I came home 5 days after it started to find still no action at all. I blitzed the apples with a hand held food mixer and shoved in some bakers’ yeast. Apparently some recipes have raw meat, but I didn’t fancy that. It got going right away and five more days later it looks more interesting.
The next step is in a few days when I mix it with other ingredients.