Looking For Something To Do With Those Few Extra Pounds Of Strawberries At The End Of Summer Why Not Learn How To Make Homemade Strawberry Wine Its Sweet Its Refreshing And You Dont Need Much In The Way Of Equipment And Supplies
Like strawberry wine, seventeen. The hot July moon saw everything. My first taste of love, whoa bittersweet. But green on the vine, Like strawberry wine. Strawberry Wine by Deana Carter
That song always goes through my head when I think about strawberries or strawberry wine. I could be because that song came out when I was 17, and that was the year I tried Strawberry Hill wine for the first time.
Anyone remember Strawberry Hill wine? It was a cheaper bottle, and it always left me with a nasty headache the next day. Not really sure why, maybe it was the several bottles at a time consumption? Now that I am older, I no longer do that kind of thing to my body. First, I am way too old to waste a day on a hangover and secondly, I no longer have the desire to drink like that.
However, that doesnt mean that I dont enjoy a good glass of wine, I just have learned to really enjoy it. Being able to make it at home is really a good thing, too, because I can make it anytime a good fruit is in season, and I get to enjoy the efforts all year long. Or as long as the wine lasts. This homemade strawberry wine is so much better than the old stuff, in my opinion.
How Do I Make Sparkling Wines
Country wines and fruit wines are traditionally still wines . Making a sparkling wine is a bit of an advanced technique that requires a good knowledge of how yeast works, the fermentation process, and advanced bottling techniques. We recommend tackling it only after youve mastered a still wine like this strawberry wine. When youre ready to move onto sparkling wine, Wild Wine Making has some great information about that process.
Read Me: An Important Winemaking Caveat
Like most things in life, the craft of home winemaking falls on a wide spectrum. On one end, you have the folks who love to dive all inthey spend hundreds of dollars on special tools, they sanitize everything using synthetic chemicals, they take scientific records, they use very specific winemaking additives. On the other hand, there is what I like to call heritage winemakers. These people use barely nothing more than a clean canning jar, fruit, water, and some sugarafter all, thats the way folks have been making wine for generations. And then there are all of us who fall somewhere in between on the spectrum.
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Scaling This Strawberry Wine Recipe
As a note, you can easily scale this wine recipe up – in fact, there’s a function inside the recipe card itself to do the math for you!
One note, though: You don’t need to multiply the yeast, but the software doesn’t know that. We will use one pouch of yeast for anything from 1-5x batches, and then 1 pouch for every 5x batches beyond that.
As a related note: The recipe software is definitely geared towards cooking, not wine making. Therefore, you can pretty much ignore all of the info it gives you: The nutritional info is calculated on everything that goes into the wine.
It does not take into account how much sugar will be fermented out, how much volume is lost to racking, the fact that the fruit pulp is removed before the final product, etc.
How Do You Sanitize All The Tools
Level of sanitization is one of those things that falls on a wide spectrum. Some folks prefer to absolutely blast their tools with synthetic chemical sanitizers before making wine to kill any yeast or bacteria that might impact the flavor of their wine. On the other end of the spectrum, some people dont even wash the spoon they use to stir so itll keep the same yeast on it from batch to batch!
Like most things in my life, I stick to the middle path. We make sure all of our tools are cleaned very well with soap and hot water. Plus we use an oxygen wash as an extra layer of sanitization before making our wine.
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A Carboy For Secondary Fermentation:
This is simply a big ole glass jug! We brew almost exclusively in one gallon batches at our house, so we have an entire fleet of one gallon carboys. You can purchase them in a bundle with an airlock and cork. They also come in much larger sizes if you want to do big batchesfive gallon is a common carboy size. The shape of the carboy is importantthe narrow neck reduces the surface area of wine exposed to oxygen during secondary fermentation, which is good!
Step Two Preparing Your Strawberries
Before you start preparing your strawberries, boil up approx. one gallon of water in a large pot.
Allow it to cool slightly then stir in the sugar until it dissolves. You will be adding your strawberries straight in here once theyre ready, so keep them nearby.
If you are using fresh strawberries, go through them one by one, removing any visible dirt or insects on the flesh and discarding any which are under ripe, overripe, or damaged.
While you are doing this, remove the green head off each piece of fruit by twisting it between your finger and your thumb, or use a knife to trim the head.
Clean them thoroughly by submerging them in a basin of cold water for at least ten minutes, then skimming off any dirt that has risen to the surface. Then rinse them well and begin!
When it comes to strawberries, I think the less you do to them the better. I would just chop them in half so that you are releasing all that strawberry goodness inside. But you can just as easily use them whole.
Winemakers are divided on how to release the juices from your strawberries. Some say that you should put them straight into a straining bag, then place it in the fermentation bin and pour the sugar water over it.
The juices will slowly seep out and this will result in a much less cloudy wine, which means less racking in a few months time.
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How To Make Fruit Wines + Strawberry Wine Recipe
My husband and father are beer home brewers. Ive watched them devote entire Saturdays to the process of brewing beer. While I loved drinking the results, I was never interested in devoting all that time to brewing beer.
For years, I just assumed that making wine required the same amount of investment in time and equipment as beer brewing. But turns outit doesnt! You can make a batch of strawberry wine with less than 15 minutes of hands-on time. And you can be sipping it on your front porch just a few weeks later. Making fruit wines is now one of my favorite hobbies, and Im so excited to share it with you!
Today, Im going to share with you a recipe for a classic Homemade Strawberry Wine, plus walk you through the entire process for making fruit wine. You can apply these same tools and processes to almost any fruit out there, so once youve nailed down Strawberry Wine , you can let your imaginationand whats in seasoninspire your next batch.
How To Make The Wine
Wash the strawberries and hull them, remove the leaves and stems. You need to mash the strawberries in a large earthenware crock. When youve done that, you need to cover the mashed strawberries with boiling water, add the lemon juice and then stir everything for about two minutes.
Cover everything with a clean linen cloth, and store it in a cool and dark place. You need to stir this mix every day for one week.
When the week has passed, you need to strain the mix through a double-layer of cheesecloth into a large new bowl. In the new mix, there should not be any strawberry pulp. Now you need to add the sugar and stir the mix until the sugar is dissolved.
Once the sugar is dissolved, pour the mix into a clean crock and store it again in a cool and dark place. Once again you need to stir the mix every day for one week.
After a week, pour the mix into a 1-gallon glass wine bottle and cork it with a loose cork. If you dont want to use a loose cork, you can use fermentation locks. Now store the bottle in a cool and dark place for three months.
After three months you need to check if the wine is clear and is it still fermenting. If the wine is no longer bubbling, than it means that it stopped fermenting and now you can pour the wine into individual bottles. Once you pour the wine into new bottles, cork the bottles and let them age for at least a year, before drinking it.
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Step One Gathering Your Strawberries
A fruit wine is only as good as the ingredients which began it. If you start this process with delicious, ripe strawberries, you will be rewarded with a full-bodied, fruity wine.
So where are the best strawberries to be found?
Well, that will very much depend on where you live. Strawberries are one of the most popular fruits in the world, and they produced en masse just about everywhere from Vietnam to Venezuela.
However, the best berries are always the ones which grow closest to your home the ones which are native to your area, familiar to your taste buds, and dont have far to travel.
When it comes to delicate fruits such as strawberries, you want to minimize the time between the field and the table as soon as the strawberry is picked from its stem, it starts to lose its juiciness and its flavor.
If you are lucky enough to have your own strawberry patch, this will be easy for you. Alternatively, it is worth tracking down any nearby strawberry farms and asking if they operate any self-picking services, or if they sell directly from their farm shop.
If you are buying your strawberries from the market, make sure they are organic and check the country of origin.
If they have travelled more than 100 miles, it is likely that they have been treated with some sort of preservative to prevent them from rotting, and these preservatives could have an effect on the quality and taste of your wine.
Wild strawberry flowers are tiny with white petals and a yellow center.
Where Can You Get More Information On Making Strawberry Wine
As if my 5000+ words on making strawberry wine wasnt enough! If you are looking for more resources on making fruit wines, here are some of my favorite brewing books to check out:
- Wild Wine Making < this is my absolute favorite resource if you are going to pick just one!
Additional Time: Total Time:
You’re going to be shocked by how easy it is to make fruit wine! Our beginner’s tutorial will teach you step-by-step how to make homemade strawberry wine.
- 3 pounds frozen, hulled whole strawberries
- 2 1/2 pounds cane sugar
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Optional Step : Back Sweetening
When your secondary fermentation is over, its time to taste that wine! In general, fruit wines need time to age before they are really delicious, so dont be too concerned about the flavor profile yet. What you are concerned about right now is sweetness. If you taste the wine and are happy with the sweetness, you can move onto Step #5!
If you taste the wine and its too dry, no worries, we can now rack the wine and back sweeten it. There are multiple ways to do this:
A Note On Finding The Best Strawberries
The 2016 strawberry season was a bountiful one at our favorite local u-pick farm, Red Grouse Farm. Becky and her family spend long hours out in the berry patch, tending everything by hand so I don’t have to.
They don’t use any herbicides or pesticides, and use holistic farming practices that build the soil instead of mining it like conventional farming.
Becky and I had a great conversation about some of our favorite soil and permaculture gurus as she helped us fill our strawberry baskets for this wine.
I’ve had a number of readers ask why we don’t grow our own strawberries. We have land, but strawberries are labor intensive, and since I have a source I trust close by, I support their efforts.
Meanwhile, we’re focusing on crops I can’t find elsewhere, and/or those that are more expensive, like blueberries, raspberries, gooseberries, aronia berries, bush cherries, seaberries, hardy kiwis and others.
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Lets Make Some Strawberry Country Wine
Primary Fermentation Container:Carboy for Secondary Fermentation:Airlock:Bottling Equipment:*** Helpful idea: I would save time and instead of piecing everything together, I would encourage and highly recommend purchasing the Summer Harvest Winemaking Kit from MoreBeer. The kit contains everything you need in order to make your first fruit wine. All you would need to add is the fruit, sugar, and water. I used this kit for my first fruit wine and it is extremely user friendly for a new person and comes with everything you need to have success!!Sanitize:
Make A Berry Tasty Wine
PICK YOUR STYLE
For each gallon of wine, youll need between 2.5 and 5 lbs. of strawberries. Most recipes call for 3 or 4 lbs. , but its your choice. The 2.5-lb. recipe will yield a lighter, more delicate pink wine. This type of recipe is recommended if you intend to make your wine extremely dry. You should shoot for a finished alcohol level of 10 percent or a starting specific gravity reading of about 1.078.
If you prefer your wines heartier, fuller, and more robust, 5 lbs of strawberries per gallon may be the way to go. With this type of wine, shoot for an alcohol level of 12 to 13 percent or a starting specific gravity between 1.092 and 1.100.
The following two recipes represent the extremes that can be achieved with a strawberry wine. The first recipe is a light dinner wine that would be consumed as a white or rosé would. The latter is a full, assertive country wine that would be enjoyed the same way as a dessert wine.
TABLE STRAWBERRY WINE
- 12.5 lbs. strawberries
- 1/8 tsp. sodium bisulfite
- pectic enzyme
- 5 tsp. yeast nutrient
- 8 tsp. acid blend
- 8 lbs. sugar
- 1 pkg. Champagne yeast
- 25 lbs. strawberries
- 1/4 tsp. sodium bisulfite
- pectic enzyme
- 5 tsp. yeast nutrient
- 12 lbs. sugar
- 1 pkg. Lalvin D-47 Yeast or Red Star Red Pasteur Yeast
PREPARING THE BERRIES
STARTING WITH A LIQUEUR
Now its time to dilute the liqueur with water to 5 gallons . Stir in the sugar until completely dissolved, then add the yeast nutrient and yeast as called for in the recipes above.
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What Happens If You Bottle Your Wine Before Its Done Fermenting
You might make little wine bombs! If the wine is still fermenting when you bottle, itll keep producing carbon dioxide, which will eventually build up to a point in the bottle where it needs to escape. When it gets there, the bottle might pop its cork, pop off its flip-topor in the worst case scenario, break the glass of the bottle. You can prevent this by making sure the wine is still and finished fermenting before bottling or by sterilizing the wine with Campden tablets before bottling. I personally like to live on the edge, so I never sterilize my wine , and occasionally, I open up a nice carbonated bottle!
Lets Get Started Making This Strawberry Wine Recipe
The first thing I do after bringing my berries home is wash the fruit really well. I pick over the berries and remove any berries or spots that may be bad. I cut the green tops off and cut the strawberries up into pieces. Then, I place my berried in ziplock bags and freeze them. Be sure to double bag them.
I believe that freezing the strawberries, or any berry for that matter, makes the extraction of fluid, flavor and color in the wine better. Therefore when I make this strawberry wine recipe, I always look to freeze my fruit when I can. After freezing the strawberries overnight, take them out to defrost completely. Be sure to put your bags of frozen strawberries in a sanitized bucket to thaw completely. I have found that no matter what kind of bag I am using, somehow it ends up leaking.
Place a mesh bag into you primary fermenter pail. Pour your Strawberries and any juice into the mesh bag. Smash up the strawberries with a cleaned and sanitized potato masher or use your really clean hands to really squish it up.
The next step in this strawberry wine recipe is to boil the water and dissolve all of the sugar in the water. While the water is nice and hot, pour it over the strawberries and stir it with a clean spoon. At this point, I will cover the strawberry must and let the whole thing cool off to room temperature.
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