This has been a real slow summer in the kitchen and garden, for a variety of reasons. I didn’t really work on too many garden or kitchen projects this year, and I definitely haven’t been updating my blog with the few projects which I did do. Shame.
I did make a gallon batch of wine from yellow peaches, but I didn’t keep any notes about it and I didn’t jot down a draft blog post at the time either (I typically draft posts long in advance, and then forget to publish them until much later. It’s a system, just not a good one.). From the best of my notes, here is what I did:
- I took about 8-10 lbs of peaches, “measured” in a very haphazard way because I don’t own a food scale. I stood on our bathroom scale, and then started picking up peaches until our total weight went up by about 10lbs. Of course, the scale gives a different number every time you get on it, swinging 5lbs in either direction depending on its mood. So the real amount of peaches I used could have been much larger or much smaller.
- I rinsed the peaches and sliced them with skins on. I added them to a pot with some water and boiled until soft
- When cooled, I dumped the peaches into a bucket along with enough water to bring the total amount to 1.25 gallons
- I added some sugar (I think it was about 3 cups, but we will never know for certain) to the mix, yeast and yeast nutrient.
One day the fermentation was going great, and the next morning (after a relatively cold night where we had the windows open) it was dead stopped. I assumed that it was stuck because of the cold crash, so I ran down to the brew store for a packet of rescue yeast and a hydrometer. I checked the wine with the hydrometer and it was indeed finished. So, needing nothing else, I racked it to secondary.
One problem that I ran into was that the soft, cooked peaches and sediment were clogging up the siphon. A large amount of sediment also made it into the secondary container. I need to find a way to filter that out at some point. Maybe I can get some cheese cloth or muslin or something. Here you can see the magnitude of the problem:
One other problem I had was that the total amount of liquid was less than a gallon when all the siphoning and straining was done. The peaches made up much more of the volume than I expected and I didn’t add nearly enough water to it.
When I racked it the wine did have a very pleasant peachy flavor. I’m looking forward to tasting the completed product.
- Keep notes.
- Use a fermenting bag to hold the peaches, so they can be strained off easily and won’t clog the siphon.
- Maybe consider not cooking the peaches, or not cooking them as much, if they’re going to create a lot of soft sediment.
- Write blog posts when you do the project, not weeks later when memory is fuzzing and other projects are demanding my attention.