Tuesday, July 16

Rice Wine

Rice wine is an ancient drink, having been found in pottery jars in a Neolithic village in Northern China, dated back as early as 9,000 years ago, So you would think that it would be an easy drink to make, and yes after a bit of experimenting I found a very easy way to make it. 

The most easy walkthrough ever: rice, jar and yeastballs.

The ingredients are quite simple but it is important to get them right. First you need rice, and you need to use rice with a high carbohydrate content such assticky or glutinous rice. Soak itfor 4-5 hours or overnight. Drain and rinse a couple of times until the rinsed off water is pretty clear and steam the rice in a rice cooker, and then let it cool. Next, you crush your yeast balls. I get mine from startercultures.eu, the largest European web store for home fermentation enthusiasts- easy peasy. Put them in a plastic bag and smash them with e.g. a vegetable pounder. Now take a large glass jar that you can close with a cheesecloth or a lid with airlock and add a bit of the cooled rice in the jar. Then add a bit of the yeast powder, some more rice and so forth, and mix the whole thing together. Close the jar with the lid or cloth and place in a dark warm corner to ferment. I can’t stress enough that everything that touches the fermented rice at every stage must be absolutely clean, the slightest contamination could spoil the whole batch in an instant. 

After a few days, the rice will smell sweet and liquid will be visible and you can taste it already. Over the next weeks the rice will continue to ferment and after a three weeks there will be just some rice left floating on top of your rice wine. You can let it ferment longer if you want to. Once fermentation is complete, separate the liquid from what’s left of the rice using a cheesecloth or a strainer. Now put it in a nice bottle and keep it in the fridge to stop the fermentation. Mix with some kiwi and you have yourself a heck of a healthy drink, and then some!

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