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sarasuperid

Sacred Beers

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I wanted to post about beer making. It is instant satisfaction and very rewarding, it can be less alchohic than wine or mead. You use the same equipment to make it, plus a stove for boiling and a fridge to put it in when its done. Michele you might have to do this over a fire in your yard! Oh yeah and you need a gizmo to put the lids on with, or you can buy the resealing reusable ones with littlelevers on them, I like those.

 

A beer takes only like two- three weeks to make and doesn't need to age.

 

There are probably a million recipes online, I am using the book Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers.

 

Its a good follow up for me to Wild Fermentation because it is unscientific dirty and wild. My kind of witchery!

 

I have a boiling spirit (yeast) living in my house that flew in on the air and ferments my honey mead for me. And I learned you can save the yeast from the lees to start your next batch, rather than buying it new every batch. Woot!

 

So far I have been doing well with herbal brews, I am giving fruity ones another go, and I want to try something with ginger soon.

 

:beerchug:

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That sounds lovely - I am looking to make some papaya and ginger mead once my papayas get big enough. How does it taste compared to commercial beers - does it still have that after-taste or can one do away with that?

 

M

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If you don't use hopps then there isn't much bitterness. It also depends on the yeast. I like Belgian wheat ales with no hops vor a not bitter beer with good flavor and body. Beer is a huge world!

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Yay, another person who's not hellbent on hops! So very often I see beer advertised on it's hops content, like it's all about the hops. Hops are freakin' bitter, I prefer a heavier, sweeter malt content myself, and just a touch of hops.

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Weirdly hoppy beers are harder for beginners to make, stouts and porters in particular if you are unsure the kits for these ones produce the better consistent results. Tasting home brewers own (my own firsts, family beers and of course friends attempts) over a few years holds this to be true for me and others I know who brew also confirm it. One of my hobbies is beer drinking. :)

 

I may be a bit biased here as I love these darker beers personally with bitters coming afterwards and whilst I love hops (the uses of this plant seriously :) ) I find craft beers of the hoppy kind end up to hoppy hops and just to bitter for me personally to enjoy in any sense. Ritually and magically I find the darker beers better as they can more easily take on extra herbs or subs. ;)

 

Now I brew with kits, would love the time to try the brewing process in its entire form but my philtres and balms take up that time at present. But I do like to add my own touches, does anyone else brew this way?

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www.garshol.priv.no/blog

 

This is the best source I've found since I recently became enamoured of brewing. Sarasuperid, hopefully tacking this on to your thread brings no ire. But, somewhere in here is a lovely account of current firstlings sacrifice in the Northlands. Granny runs off with the new tipple and pours it over a phallic stone, what is better than that?

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My husband makes beer, wine and mead. He is currently working on a gallon batch of chamomile ale, and about three gallons of muscadine wine. The ale should be ready in about a week. He is also aging a batch of peach mead, which should be ready around the end of the year. I really want to get him that sacred beers book!

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I've always to try my hand with beer. I've also wanted to try the very occasional henbane beer, I hear it's an excellent time.

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Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers: The Secrets of Ancient Fermentation by Stephen Harrod Buhner is a useful resource for this kind of thing. I've made 'buzz beer' with yerba mate in it (ok), 'sleepy beer' with hops, lavender, chamomile and valerian (quite nice), and 'bizarre beer' with wormwood, salvia divinorum, wild dagga and blue lotus (odd, but drinkable cold).

I'm looking forward to my mugwort growing enough to pick to use for this, possibly with taragon and wormwood as an 'Artemissia trifecta' I think that blue lotus will go better with a mid-sweet and aromatic wine like muscadine - hope to have enough grapes this year to have a go - i now have my own home-grown blue lotus to use rather than bought.
 

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Twice now I've misread the title as "Sacred Bears" ... Care Bears with full regalia? Sigh. Danged small print on my Eye Pad...(cough)

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I just started a batch of wild yeast, made with figs, to be used in a mugwort beer. I love brewing unusual beers and meads, particularly those used in ritual. I’ve been brewing traditional beers for a long time, but I’m really getting into foraged brew ingredients and wild yeasts.

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I love this.

While I have never attempted beer, I have made blackberry and apple wines.  I am also interested in the foraged ingredients.  I am attempting a Rowan berry wine with no luck.

I have tried twice and each time it comes out terrible.  It does have an alcohol content, but it's undrinkable.  It has been suggested to blend it with another wine.

Edited by Sagefire

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I love this.

While I have never attempted beer, I have made blackberry and apple wines.  I am also interested in the foraged ingredients.  I am attempting a Rowan berry wine with no luck.

I have tried twice and each time it comes out terrible.  It does have an alcohol content, but it's undrinkable.  It has been suggested to blend it with another wine.

I don’t think Rowan trees grow near me, so I don’t know what the flavor profile would be. Is it undrinkable because its too bitter or didn’t ferment properly? You could maybe “dry hop” the wine with Rowan leaves about 1/2 way through fermentation. You could also make a tea from the leaves and add that at the halfway point.

 

Will it be a magical wine or just something yummy to sip?

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Well thus far I have prepared the  berries in the same manner of grapes.  They must be frozen on the tree before harvest to assure proper sugar content, but sugar is still added.  I use a winemaker's yeast and they ferment admirably.  The product is so astringent that you want to spit it out immediately.  I have never considered using the leaves.  This is intended to be a magical wine, but also something to be tippled, along the lines of a Zin or Riesling.

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Well thus far I have prepared the  berries in the same manner of grapes.  They must be frozen on the tree before harvest to assure proper sugar content, but sugar is still added.  I use a winemaker's yeast and they ferment admirably.  The product is so astringent that you want to spit it out immediately.  I have never considered using the leaves.  This is intended to be a magical wine, but also something to be tippled, along the lines of a Zin or Riesling.

 

 

I wonder if you could cut the Rowan berries with some of the canned grape juice that you can buy at home brew stores for wine making? Since the Rowan berries probably aren’t very sweet compared to wine grapes, you can try changing the kind of sugar you use, to get a little lingering sweetness. I’m using brown sugar in the Mugwort beer to get a little additional sweetness. Would love to hear about your results when you’re done. I haven’t made any wines yet but would be interested to see how you deal with the astringency.

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Sharing some photos of the mugwort beer I’m making. I used figs to make a wild yeast starter and harvested the mugwort from my garden. The recipe is adapted from Pascal Bauder’s foraging book. This has a short fermentation time compared to the traditional beers I make, and will be ready to drink in a couple of weeks.

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This is awesome.  Would you be willing to discuss your fig yeast starter?  If it is a secret personal recipe I completely understand.  Do you often use glass?  I was considering going to ceramic containers like those used centuries ago for my proofing and aging.  Most of what I have is scrounged and scavenged.  I find sanitized 5 gallon plastic paint buckets to be very useful.

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Totally happy to share the starter. My neighbor has a fig tree that she doesn’t treat with fertilizer or pesticides, so I took a few of those, since they’re absolutely teeming with wild yeast. Have you ever seen grapes or plums or other fruit that has a kind of white powdery coating? That’s yeast and although any fruit would work, fruits with that coating are especially yeasty. Organic or foraged are going to be the best fruits to use, since you don’t want to wash them before hand. Apples, grapes, plums, wild berries, pineapple, cherries would all make nice starters.

 

I put 4-5 small figs in a glass jar with 1/4 cup of sugar (you could use honey or agave or any natural sweetener) and 2 cups of water, and put a piece of cheesecloth over the jar. Stuck it in my pantry and in three days, I had lots of bubbles. It smelled a little yeasty, and slightly figgy. If yours smell “off”, trash it and start again. I made my wort with mugwort, brown sugar, and lemons and when it cooled to about 70 degrees, I pitched the fig starter in, popped in the airlock and sealed it up. The whole process is easy and not at all fussy.

 

I didn’t have a nice crock to make the starter in, but would have if I did! I like the glass since I can see the little bubbles forming without having to take off the cheesecloth (and perhaps introducing a bacteria). I’m fermenting this beer in a 5 gallon food grade plastic bucket. I have a 6 gallon glass carboy, but it’s difficult to clean and the beer didn’t need all that head room. I tend to brew larger batches when I make regular beers, but my weird ritual beers are small one or two gallon batches and I should invest in some gallon sized glass jugs, like the ones that cheap Gallo wines come in. The 2 cups of starter is enough to ferment 2 gallons total of beer, and probably would be the same for wines and meads.

 

This is awesome.  Would you be willing to discuss your fig yeast starter?  If it is a secret personal recipe I completely understand.  Do you often use glass?  I was considering going to ceramic containers like those used centuries ago for my proofing and aging.  Most of what I have is scrounged and scavenged.  I find sanitized 5 gallon plastic paint buckets to be very useful.

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Did you add the lemon for flavor or the acid content?  I like the idea of natural sweeteners and I see the advantage of a glass starter vessel.  I never considered the introduction of outside bacteria.  Is your fermentation storage space temperature controlled?

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You ask good questions! The lemon is for both. Mugwort is bitter, especially after boiling it for 30 minutes, so the lemon is a nice compliment to that bitterness. But citric acid is also a preservative and inhibits bacterial growth. It’ll be interesting to see how much citrus flavor is retained when it’s finished. I thought to add some additional flavors, maybe coriander or orange zest, but kept it simple this time. I’m trying to get my hands on some good dried henbane for my next brew. Thinking I’ll need to grow my own if I want enough to make a beer with.

 

No temperature control. My pantry doubles as my room and it’s dark and coolish in there, so I keep my big batches of fire cider and anything I’m brewing or fermenting in there. It’s also closed off so the cats and dogs can’t venture in and potentially spoil anything.

 

So what are you brewing? Have you made anything that you loved and would make again? What kind of yeast do you use?

 

Did you add the lemon for flavor or the acid content?  I like the idea of natural sweeteners and I see the advantage of a glass starter vessel.  I never considered the introduction of outside bacteria.  Is your fermentation storage space temperature controlled?

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