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Making Wine with Fruits other than Grapes

 

Most people commonly associate wines with grapes; however, it is entirely possible to make wines from fruits other than grapes. The production of wine using fruits other than grapes has become quite commonplace as the hobby of home winemaking has become more pronounced in just the last few years.

The process of making wines from various types of fruit is no more complicated than making wine from grapes. The only difference between making wine using grapes and other fruits is the fact that you may need to make some adjustments when using other fruits including sugar content and acid levels. This will mean a couple of extra steps that may not usually be necessary when making grape wine; however, winemakers who have made the decision to use different fruits report that the extra effort is well worth it as you can often produce a stellar wine.

Any number of different fruits may be used for making wine including peaches, watermelons, plums, strawberries, blackberries, boysenberries, gooseberries, pears, grapefruits, persimmons, pineapples and much more.

The first step in making wine using other types of fruit is the same as making wine using grapes. You will need to evaluate the fruit. Keep in mind that the resulting wine cannot be any better than the fruit that was used to produce it. This means that you will need to pay careful attention to the quality of the fruit that you use to make your wine.

Avoid fruit that contain excessive bruises and molds. Try to use only fruit that is completely ripe. Fruit that is not fully ripe tend to produce wine that is somewhat lacking in character. Make sure that you rinse off the fruit before the crushing.

In some cases, you may need to dilute the fruit with water in order to get a good wine. This is because certain types of fruit are too strong on their own without dilution. Other fruits have a level of acid that is too high without dilution and will result in a wine that is sharp tasting. Blueberry and gooseberries are both examples of fruit that require some dilution because of their natural acid levels. Take note that this is not the case with all fruits. Apples, for example, do not require any dilution. You may use pure apple juice with no worries.

The exact amount of fruit that you use to make your wine is dependent on a few factors. Really, there is not a single right formula when it comes to fruit amounts. If you want a dessert wine then you may wish to use more fruit in order to create a heavier, sweeter wine. On the other hand, if you want a wine that is lighter and crisper then you may wish to use less fruit.

In order to monitor and adjust the sugar levels as necessary when using fruits for your winemaking, it is necessary to use a hydrometer. The hydrometer will help you to easily determine the amount of sugar that is present in the juice and how much alcohol will be produce from the level of sugar that is present. This will aide you in understanding whether more sugar needs to be added to produce a higher alcohol content. A hydrometer is a tube of glass with a floating weight on one end. You will be able to gauge the sugar level by looking at how low or high the hydrometer floats once placed in the juice. Generally, there will be a meter on the hydrometer that indicates the alcohol potential.

You will also need to test and adjust the acidity as necessary when using fruits. This is imperative because acid levels can vary greatly among different types of fruits. There are two ways in which acid can be checked. One way is to use pH testing strips or litmus papers. This is generally a very fast and cheap way to check acid levels; however, it is not the most accurate way to check acid levels. The most accurate way to check acid levels is to use a process known as titration. A titration kit can be used to measure the acid level and how it will actually taste. If it is necessary to adjust the level of acid, you can do so using three different fruit acids. They are malic, citric and tartaric and they can be purchased either separately or in a blend known as Acid Blend.

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Making Wine

Steps of Making Wine

If you are a true wine connoisseur, the next step in appreciating a fine wine may be to make your own wine at home. While the process may seem to be complicated, wine can be made rather easily at home. Before beginning the process of making your own wine at home it is important to understand the basic steps of winemaking.

In order to make wine at home you will need either grape concentrate or grapes. If you have a sufficient growing area, you may choose to grow your own grapes and make wine from that. If you choose to use grape concentrate, keep in mind that you will need to use high quality grape concentrate. This can be purchased online as well as in wine and home brewing stores. In addition, you will need yeast and brewing equipment. If this is your first batch of wine you may wish to consider purchasing a wine kit rather than buying all of your equipment separately. After you have had a chance to experiment with making wine at home and decided whether it is an endeavor you wish to continue you might then begin accumulating various pieces of equipment for brewing larger batches of wine.

There are five to eight basic steps involved in the process of making wine, depending on whether you are using grapes or concentrate. If you are using grapes then the fruit will obviously need to be harvested first. After the grapes have been harvested, you will then need to remove the stems from the grapes. This is an absolutely essential step as very bitter tannins are contained in the stems that can have a heavy influence on the wine.

After the stems have been removed, the skins of the grapes will then need to be broken in order to release the juice from the fruit. There are certainly many different ways in which to do this. Crushing is the preferred method for most winemakers. The degree to which the fruit is crushed will have an impact on the resulting wine. If your goal is to create a wine that has a fruity aroma then you may wish to leave the berries almost completely intact.

The next step is known as the primary fermentation. During this step the yeast cells contained in the wine will feed on the sugars. Alcohol and carbon dioxide is produced as a result. In some cases, you may wish to add additional yeast. This helps to ensure a stable and consistent conversion which may not be the case if you rely solely on the yeast that is found on the fruit itself.

After the primary fermentation, more juice will need to be extracted from the fruit. It should be noted that the juice that is extracted in this step is typically not as high of a quality as the juice that is extracted during the crushing phase. This is because the juice that is obtained during crushing, known as free run juice, has had less contact with the stems and skins. This does not mean that press juice is useless; however. Even large wineries may choose to use press juice in order to increase their yield.

A secondary fermentation occurs after the pressing, at the same time as the wine is aging. As the winemaker, it will be up to you to determine how long the wine should ferment.

Blending is an optional part of the process; however, one which can assist you in creating a highly customized wine. Blending is most commonly used in order to improve two or more batches which may be slightly lacking.

The last step of the process is bottling. The wine is poured into bottles and at times you may wish to add sulfites in order to help end fermentation as well as to preserve the wine. Finally, the bottle of wine is sealed with a cork.

Making wine at home can be a very enjoyable experience.

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Barbecue Sauce

Barbecue Sauce Recipe By : Serving Size : 1 Preparation Time Categories : Cajun Sauces Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method -------- ------------ -------------------------------- 3 cups Onions -- chopped 1/4 cup Honey 1 tablespoon Garlic -- chopped 2 tablespoons Lemon juice 1 cup Sweet pepper -- chopped 1 tablespoon Salt 1/2 cup Parsley -- dried 3 tablespoons Lea & Perrins 1 cup Dry white wine 1/2 teaspoon Mint -- dried 3 tablespoons Vinegar 1 tablespoon Liquid smoke 2 cups Ketchup 1/2 tablespoon Louisiana hot sauce Place all ingredients in a pot that is big enough to hold them. Bring to a boil. Cook, covered, on low heat for several hours
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Barbecue Sauce

Recipe By :
Serving Size : 1

Preparation Time
Categories : Cajun Sauces

Amount Measure Ingredient — Preparation Method
——– ———— ——————————–
3 cups Onions — chopped
1/4 cup Honey
1 tablespoon Garlic — chopped
2 tablespoons Lemon juice
1 cup Sweet pepper — chopped
1 tablespoon Salt
1/2 cup Parsley — dried
3 tablespoons Lea & Perrins
1 cup Dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon Mint — dried
3 tablespoons Vinegar
1 tablespoon Liquid smoke
2 cups Ketchup
1/2 tablespoon Louisiana hot sauce

Place all ingredients in a pot that is big enough to hold them. Bring to a
boil. Cook, covered, on low heat for several hours

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Andouille Barbecue Sauce

Andouille Barbecue Sauce

Recipe By :
Serving Size : 25

Preparation Time ::
Categories : Cajun Appetizers

Amount Measure Ingredient — Preparation Method
——– ———— ——————————–
4 cups Onions — finely chopped
1 cup Celery — finely chopped
1 cup Bell pepper — finely chopped
1 cup Parsley — finely chopped
1 cup Peanut oil
1 tablespoon Garlic — finely chopped
3 cups Steak sauce
1/2 cup Louisiana hot sauce OR
3 cups Ketchup
2 tablespoons Cayenne pepper
3 teaspoons Salt — to taste
1 cup Southern Comfort Liquor
1 pound Andouille sausage

Saute onions, celery, bell pepper, and parsley in peanut oil until the
onions are clear or tender. Add garlic and cook a little longer. Add
steak sauce, hot sauce, and ketchup. Add salt to taste. Add Southern
Comfort. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and cook for 2 to 3 hours.
Makes about 3/4 gallon. This will keep in the refrigerator for weeks.
Slice 1 lb. andouille or smoked sausage 1/4 inch thick and combine with 1
cup sauce. Heat well on stove or in a chafing dish.
Serve with small pieces of French bread

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White Chocolate Apricot-Hazelnet Truffles

Chocolate Truffles
White Chocolate Apricot-Hazelnet Truffles (makes 28 truffles) Ingredients: 1 1/4 C hazelnuts (aka filberts) 1/4 C finely chopped dried apricots 24 ounces imported white chocolate 6 Tbl heavy cream Instructions: On a baking sheet, spread out 1 1/4 C hazelnuts. Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes, or until nuts are light brown and the dark skins are cracked. Remove as much of the skins as possible by rubbing nuts in a terry-cloth towel. Finely chop nuts in a food processor. In a 1-quart glass container, combine 12 ounces imported white chocolate, cut up and 6 Tbl heavy cream. [Note: I used the Nestle white chocolate chips that are available in my local supermarket. It worked well, but I am sure it would be better if you use a good import instead.] Microwave mixture on MEDIUM (70% power), 3 to 4 minutes, stirring twice, until chocolate is melted and smooth. [You can do this step in a double-boiler if you don't have a microwave.] Stir into melted chocolate 3/4 C of the chopped nuts and 1/4 C finely chopped dried apricots. Cover the mixture and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours, or until mixture is firm enough to hold its shape. (If mixture gets too hard, let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes or so, until firm but soft enough to shape.) Form 28 smooth 1 1/4-inch diameter balls, either by using a 1 1/4-inch automatic-release ice cream scoop, or by rolling 1 Tbl of the mixture between your (clean!) hands. Place on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet and refrigerate until firm, 1 hour or longer. In a small glass dish, place another 12 ounces imported white chocolate, cut up.
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User Rating: 4.75 ( 1 votes)
10

White Chocolate Apricot-Hazelnet Truffles

(makes 28 truffles)

Ingredients:
1 1/4 C hazelnuts (aka filberts)
1/4 C finely chopped dried apricots
24 ounces imported white chocolate
6 Tbl heavy cream

Instructions:
On a baking sheet, spread out 1 1/4 C hazelnuts. Bake at 350 F for 10
minutes, or until nuts are light brown and the dark skins are cracked.
Remove as much of the skins as possible by rubbing nuts in a terry-cloth
towel. Finely chop nuts in a food processor.

In a 1-quart glass container, combine 12 ounces imported white chocolate,
cut up and 6 Tbl heavy cream.

[Note: I used the Nestle white chocolate chips that are available in
my local supermarket. It worked well, but I am sure it would be better
if you use a good import instead.]

Microwave mixture on MEDIUM (70% power), 3 to 4 minutes, stirring twice,
until chocolate is melted and smooth. [You can do this step in a
double-boiler if you don’t have a microwave.]

Stir into melted chocolate 3/4 C of the chopped nuts and 1/4 C finely
chopped dried apricots.

Cover the mixture and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours, or until mixture is firm
enough to hold its shape. (If mixture gets too hard, let stand at room
temperature for 30 minutes or so, until firm but soft enough to shape.)
Form 28 smooth 1 1/4-inch diameter balls, either by using a 1 1/4-inch
automatic-release ice cream scoop, or by rolling 1 Tbl of the mixture
between your (clean!) hands.
Place on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet and refrigerate until firm, 1
hour or longer.
In a small glass dish, place another 12 ounces imported white chocolate,
cut up.

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Chocolate Covered Truffles

Chocolate Truffles
Chocolate Covered Truffles 1/4 C butter 1 1/2 lbs. real semisweet chocolate 3/4 C non-dairy coffee creamer, any flavor 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 1/2 pounds real milk chocolate for dipping 1 cup finely chopped chocolate, milk or semisweet for decoration Makes about 3 dozen truffles Melt semisweet chocolate in double boiler over hot water. Heat butter, creamer and vanilla in another saucepan to 125° F on a candy thermometer. Add to semisweet chocolate all at once, beating until smooth and creamy. Chill in refrigerator until nearly set but still pliable. Beat with mixer until light and fluffy. Spread in 9 inch buttered pan until set enough to roll into small balls. Mealt milk chocolate over double boiler. Dip truffles in melted chocolate, then sprinkle generously, or roll in, chopped chocolate
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Chocolate Covered Truffles
1/4 C butter 1 1/2 lbs. real semisweet chocolate 3/4 C non-dairy coffee creamer, any flavor 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 1/2 pounds real milk chocolate for dipping 1 cup finely chopped chocolate, milk or semisweet for decoration

Makes about 3 dozen truffles
Melt semisweet chocolate in double boiler over hot water. Heat butter, creamer and vanilla in another saucepan to 125° F on a candy thermometer. Add to semisweet chocolate all at once, beating until smooth and creamy. Chill in refrigerator until nearly set but still pliable. Beat with mixer until light and fluffy. Spread in 9 inch buttered pan until set enough to roll into small balls. Mealt milk chocolate over double boiler. Dip truffles in melted chocolate, then sprinkle generously, or roll in, chopped chocolate

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Chocolate Truffles

Chocolate Truffles
Chocolate Truffles ½ Cup unsalted butter 2 1/3 C confectioner’s sugar ½ C cocoa 1/4 cup heavy or whipping cream 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla Centers: pecan, walnuts, whole almonds or after-dinner mints Coatings: coconut, crushed nuts,confectioners sugar Makes about 3 dozen truffles Cream butter in large mixer bowl. Combine 2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar and the cocoa; add alternately with cream and vanilla to butter. Blend well. Chill until firm. Shape small amount of mixture around desired center; roll into 1 inch balls. Drop into desired coating and turn until well covered. Chill until firm.  
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Chocolate Truffles

½ Cup unsalted butter
2 1/3 C confectioner’s sugar
½ C cocoa

1/4 cup heavy or whipping cream 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Centers: pecan, walnuts, whole almonds or after-dinner mints

Coatings: coconut, crushed nuts,confectioners sugar

Makes about 3 dozen truffles
Cream butter in large mixer bowl. Combine 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar and the cocoa; add alternately with cream and vanilla to butter. Blend well. Chill until firm. Shape small amount of mixture around desired center; roll into 1 inch balls. Drop into desired coating and turn until well covered. Chill until firm.