Blackberry Wine

Wine. That tasty beverage has captured us. Obsessed is more like it. This winter we've thrown ourselves head first into the world of wine making and we're loving it! Combine fruit, sugar, water and yeast and through a little magic and thinking you too can make your own wines.

We just made a nice Blackberry Wine that we are going to let sit a little longer this winter after we ciphon it and we can't wait to drink it!  Makes 1 gallon

Ingredients:

3 pints blackberries

2 cups sugar

Water

1 packet of Lalvin D47 yeast

Instructions:

Take your blackberries and heat them up in in pan with some water to get them soft. We heated ours for about 5 minutes. Set the aside and let them cool. Once you sterilize your jars or carboys with Sani Star  and then fill 1/3 of the way with water. Add sugar and shake. Once your berries have cooled I like to pour the liquid through a mesh strainer and then take a spoon and press the berries through. Alternatively you could take the mixture and run it through a blender or food processor. Add the puree to the container and then your yeast and top off with water. Only fill to the bend in your jar leaving enough space. Shake well and then add a airlock. Label and date your wine and put it in a cool dark place to ferment.

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Fermented Cranberry Relish

I think a lot of people have a love hate relationship with cranberries. As the holidays have rolled around and Thanksgiving came I was thinking a lot about cranberry sauce and how I like it and yet I don't like it but, something in me wanted to redeem what magic cranberries do have so I took it to the kitchen and with the power of fermentation by my side decided to whip up a fermented cranberry relish and the result was a good one! I packed multiple jars for friends and family on a recent Thanksgiving trip to Virginia and Washington DC and it was a hit! Lovers of cranberries and non lovers alike enjoyed this tangy fermented gift. With the hollidays in full swing we hope you'll take a stab at this yummy ferment for the holidays.

 

Fermented Cranberry Relish

Ingredients:

  • Fresh cranberries (3 cups)
  • Dried cranberries (1 cup)
  • Ginger root (2 inch piece)
  • Sugar (3 tablespoons)
  • Sea salt (1 tablespoon)
  • Cinnamon (optional)
  • Walnuts (optional)

Take your cranberries and put them in a food processer and rough chop them. Move to a bowl and add a sea salt. Stir well to allow the brine to start coming out of the cranberries. Grate the ginger root. Add the ginger, sugar, and dried cranberries to the bowl. Mix well. Add cinnamon or chopped walnuts as an optional added bit of magic. Move the mixture to a jar and pack it down, add a weight to keep it submerged below the brine. Cover with a lid or towel and put in a cool dark place to ferment. We let our sit for about 5 days before harvesting.

 

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Cinnamon Fig Shrub

Shrubs! We first fell in love with shrubs on a trip to Portland, Oregon when we hit up the coffeeshop Barista and they had an amazing Fig Shrub based Espresso drink with some other magic mixed in. It was absolutely amazing and when when we got home we started making these easy and tasty drink mixers. We like them in bourbon, gin, seltzer, and more!

This is our Cinnamon Fig Shrub that we recently made after being asked by our friends Thomasin and Alex to make a drink mixer for their upcoming wedding. They wanted something that people could take away as a gift and that would be a nice mixer....so Cinnamon Fig Shrub it was! We love this delightful fall mixer and we think you will too! Note: if you save all those ends and tips you can use them to make a nice Fruit Scrap Vinegar which is what we did!

Cinnamon Fig Shrub

Ingredients:
Fresh Figs
Sugar
Raw Apple Cider Vinegar
Water
Cinnamon Stick (optional)

Directions:

    - Add equal parts of sugar and water to a saucepan, and heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.
    - Add figs and simmer until the fruit's juice blends well into the syrup.
    - Let it rest till it cools
    - Add vinegar to the syrup in a large (ideally glass) container
    - Cover with a lid or airlock and let ferment for 5-10 days
    - Filter your shrub through a strainer and enjoy!

 

Fermented Apple Pear Sauce

When I was a kid at basically every dinner there would be either applesauce or apple butter on the table. The apple butter usually came from the Amish farm or the local apple farm, and the applesauce...well, Mott's was what we had.

Thinking about my love of applesauce and over the years of hauling home a huge CSA loot of apples and pears I started making a slow cooker Apple Pear Sauce somewhere around September. Always the maker and always the person wanting to re-invent things I decided that this year we would do a few batches of Fermented Apple Pear Sauce to add to our fall goodies...promptly followed by Apple Cider Vinegar, Hard Cider, Cyszar, and a fall Apple Kraut.

Here's our recipe for our Fermented Apple Pear Sauce. Hope you enjoy it as much as we have!

Ingredients:

  • 5 medium apples and 2-3 medium pears
  • 2 Tbsp. water kefir
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

Instructions:

  1. Chop apples and pears into chunks. Optional is to peel them -- we like them with peels on with the cores removed. Throw them into a food processor and blend until you get your desired consistency.
  2. Mix in water kefir, ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.
  3. Transfer to a quart jar, leave room for the ferment to do it's thing, we suggest 1 inch (or at the curve of the jar).
  4. Cover the jar with a cloth, lid, airlock, pickle pipe, or whatever method of your choosing.
  5. Ferment for 1-3 days until you reach a flavor and texture that you like. We suggest tasting it daily to see how the flavor profile changes daily. It's really the best way to learn how you like your ferments! Once you like the flavor, put a lid on the jar, and store in the fridge. We suggest eating within 1-2 months. 
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Pistachio Miso

One of my favorite things about winter is teaching Miso Workshops. We only teach Miso making in the winter since Miso is traditionally started in the winter months, so when it was time to start amping up for our winter workshops at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens and Enlightenment Wines we went and started digging through our Miso stash to see what we wanted to share with our students. If you got a chance to make it to the NYC Fermentation Festival then you likely got to test out some of our Miso's there as well. From our Chickpea Leek Kelp Miso, Blackbean Miso, to our Cashew Miso we've been all about Miso this winter so we wanted to share one of our favorite recipes of late with you. We've be playing with nuts and seeds a lot lately and Pistachio Miso has become one of our favorites. A quick and easy ferment, guaranteed to be a nice accoutrement to any meal.

Here's our recipe:

1 cup Raw unsalted pistachios

1/2 cup Koji (rice or barley koji)

Sea salt

Instructions:

Soak the pistachios for 2-4 hours. Drain the excess liquid. Soak the koji in a few tablespoons of water while you prep the nuts and blender.

In a blender combine the soaked pistachios with the koji and 1 tbs of sea salt and blend into a paste. You will likely have to add a little filtered water while you blend. You ultimately want it to be a toothpaste consistency.

Take a wide mouth jar and pour the mixture into the jar, leaving room at the top, put on a lid and let sit for 2-4 days in a cool dark place.

We like to use this miso as a spread on baked fish, toast, as a soup, in salad dressings and more. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!