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Fermenting cherries
Wed 13-Jul-11
4:18 pm
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Bib
Croatia

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Wed 11-Nov-09
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We had a glut of cherries a while back, and a friend recommended layering stoned cherries with sugar, leaving it for 3 months then putting the cherries in brandy for a few months to make cherry brandy, then using the cherries to make chocolate liqueurs. So I did the layering bit, gently shook the containers every once in a while, and then noticed a couple of weeks ago that 2 of them are bubbling gently.  I assume this means they are fermenting - is that right?   And if so, what do you recommend I do with them/the liquid?   If it's going to turn into drinkable booze all on its own then - hoorah!!   But do I need to do anything?   And on a similar note, is there any way of making wine or cider without any equipment other than say a few buckets?   I don't have any demijohns or airlocks or any of that (to me) mysterious equipment?   Thank you in advance for your sage advice smile

Wed 13-Jul-11
5:23 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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Wishing you luck on that one Debbie, though I guess someone will know the answer.

I'll try that again!

Wed 13-Jul-11
6:40 pm
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JoannaS
Latvia

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You might be able to cobble something together using plastic pipe to create an airlock, all you need to do is make sure there is a U-bend full of water for gases to bubble through but air not get in (or order something from Amazon?). As for your fermenting cherries, sorry can't help you on that one. cheers

Thu 14-Jul-11
12:38 pm
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Bib
Croatia

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I've just remembered that somewhere in the attic I've got a "winemaking from scratch" book.   If I dig that out, and if it's got diagrams, I'm sure I'll be able to get what I need from one of the numerous local make your own booze shops.    As for the fermenting cherries, well, they're still bubbling gently.    I'll give them a few more weeks and then start experimenting.

Thu 14-Jul-11
11:12 pm
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Tim
Salisbury, Wiltshire

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For excellent cider try page 267 of Farmhouse Fayre you can pick it up from Amazon cheap.  The cider recipe goes something like this;

Chop up loads of fallen apples, they say the smaller the better, chuck them in a bucket and cover them with a muslin and let it stand for 10 days  Now to stir it the best method I've found is to roll up the sleeves, wahs the arms and push down one side of the apples, this moves the other side up and over.  After the fermenttation has stopped add about 1 3/8 lb of sugar per gallon the bottle without the tops for about 14 days.  Put the tops on then forget about it for a few months, it becomes a beautiful sparkling drink and has quite a kick.  In the book they suggest a slice of beetroot to improve the colour but I don't bother.  You will need bottles which will take pressure glass beer bottles or plastic fizzy drink ones.  If you're in need of a decent sized bucket a plasterer's mixing bucket seems to be about half the price of a fermetation one, don't know about the grade of the plastic though.

It will be the best cider you've ever tasted and requires no fancy kit to get it going.  Oh and chill it in the fridge for a day or two before opening as this calms it down a bit, especially if you're using glass beer bottles.

Well, that didn't go quite as expected

Fri 15-Jul-11
2:55 pm
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Bib
Croatia

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Thanks Tim, I am VERY excited about this.   I'm going to have a huge apple harvest this year by the looks of things, I adore cider, and it's not available in Croatia.  (Apart from some muck called Somersby's Apple Cider which is like Apple Tango only sicklier and competely undrinkable).   A friend has a huge fruit press, so I might try incorporating that into the equation too.  Almost everyone here has their own vines and they make their own wine, so wine making equipment including huge plastic vats/buckets are readily available and quite cheap.    I'm also expecting quite a big pear harvest so I might give perry making a try too.

Fri 15-Jul-11
11:41 pm
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Tim
Salisbury, Wiltshire

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While I think of it, when it comes to opening it's important to have two saucepans; one to stand the bottle and with the other one being held upside down over the bottle by an assistant, get your hands up underneath with a bottle opener and let her go!eeekchampagne

Well, that didn't go quite as expected

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