Oh yes, another dandelion season is in full swing! This time of year I get the biggest kick out watching my husband carefully scan our yard for even a slight sign of anything yellow. He has waged a full out and out war on dandelions. He seems to be winning. For others, they love the sight of the little yellow sprouts. Those are the people who that with a little tender loving care, dandelions make delicious wine.
Making dandelion wine is not a simple task. You can't just pick them and throw them into a fermenter with a little yeast and off they go. Oh no. None of the green can be used in the wine because it will cause bitterness. Therefore, the petals must either be picked off or cut off. Very labor intensive!
I have tasted some very bitter dandelion wine - I suspect that the bitterness was caused from using the green part of the dandelion. I've also tasted some very good dandelion wine. Actually, a dandelion wine took 2nd place in our 2003 wine making competition!
If you are up to a little bit of work, here is a recipe for dandelion wine:Dandelion Wine Recipe
7 cups of Dandelion petals
1 lb chopped Golden Raisins
2-1/2 lbs Sugar
1 tsp Acid Blend
1/4 tsp Tannin
1 tsp Yeast Nutrient
1 oz Bitter Orange Peel
1 gallon hot water
1 packet of champagne yeast
Cut off or pluck petals from stems (discard all stems and green parts). Wash and drain petals - set aside.
Pour hot water in a primary fermenting bucket
and dissolve sugar.
Place petals, raisins and orange peel in a small straining bag
. Tie off bag and place in the primary fermenting bucket
Allow to cool to 70 degrees and then add all other ingredients. Stir well.
Stir daily for 7 days. After 7 days, gently squeeze straining bag into fermenter and discard entire bag. Transfer the liquid contents from the primarty fermenter into a gallon jug
. The jug should be full - if not, top up with water. Allow to sit for approx 1 month. Transfer back into primary fermenter and add 1/2 tspMetabisulphite
and 1/2 tsp of potassium sorbate
. Stir well for approx 5 minutes to drive off excess gas. Transfer back into clean gallon jug
. Allow to sit for another month.
The above recipe will yield approx 1 gallon of wine. When picking, keep away from fertilized areas and you may want to pick in a "pet-free" zone.
by: Lets Do Wine