Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > Prickly Pear Mead - Freeze or Boil?
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 09-29-2012, 08:26 PM   #1
chronlord
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 38
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default Prickly Pear Mead - Freeze or Boil?

Greetings, all. I'm getting all geared to brew up my first prickly pear mead. Harvested the fruit yesterday and plan on brewing this weekend. From what I've read, including (The Complete Meadmaker and Charlie Papazian's recipe), there are a few different methods; particularly pertaining to fruit additions, methods of sanitizing the fruit/juice, amounts added to primary and secondary.

I ended up with about 6 lbs of seedless Prickly Pear puree - hope its enough, I don't want to pick any more! Passed the whole fruit through a food mill which separated the seeds from the pulp/juice nicely.

Here are some pics of me picking a peck of prickly pears:

http://imgur.com/a/7MPb5

Questions:

How do I sanitize the puree? Is freezing sufficient? I read heating destroys some of its flavor.

Do I need to strain the juice further or will the puree settle out in the fermentors?

EDIT: Here's some pics of me picking a peck of prickly pears.

How much should I add in primary? Puree or Juice?

How mich should I add in the secondary? Puree or juice?

===========

Here's the recipe for 5 gallons: Anything look out of whack??

22lbs. Mesquite Honey

6lbs. Prickly Pear Puree - Seedless

2-5 Juiced Lemons

Yeast On Hand: 5 x 5oz. Packs of Lalvin 71B-1122 - I.N.R.A - Narbonne
Yeast On Hand: 3 x 5oz. Packs of Lalvin EC118 - Champagne (France)

2.5 tsp Pectine Enzyme

5 tsp. Yeast Nutrient (food grade urea and diammonium phosphate)
2.5 tsp Yeast Energizer (diammonium phosphate, springcell,magnesium sulphate)
1 capsule White Labs Servomyces

Are all these nutrient additions necessary? Recommendations?

I'll aerate must with drill attachment/wand 3x's a day during primary fermentation.

This will be my first mead, so any input is appreciated.

__________________

Reason: Edit: added yeast strain
chronlord is offline
MeadWitch Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2012, 08:46 PM   #2
mrdillon5
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 31
Liked 7 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

I have a 5 gallon batch going right now. I usually freeze the tunas but this time my son took my bucket to work and 'motorboated' them with a big hand held machine ( puree -er ? ) about a gallon of juice was made. half into primary and half into secondary. he triple filtered the juice.
All your ingredients sound good. I don't think you can screw it up , I 've done boiling, freezing and this year just purée. It always comes out good. I believe that boiling them, the color tends to go away over time. I also find using that much honey makes it taste like cough syrup but it mellows with age. I only used 18 lbs of honey this year in a 5 gallon batch. Don't fret, it is all good.

__________________
mrdillon5 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2012, 08:55 PM   #3
chronlord
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 38
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Good advice, thanks. I have a couple questions though. Did you triple filter the juice through a grain bag or something else?

I was thinking of lowering the honey to about 20 lbs. and trying for a FG of 1.015 or so. What FG did your mead finish at? Do you cold crash or just let it ferment out all the way?

Cheers!

__________________
chronlord is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2012, 10:43 PM   #4
mrdillon5
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 31
Liked 7 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by chronlord
Good advice, thanks. I have a couple questions though. Did you triple filter the juice through a grain bag or something else?

I was thinking of lowering the honey to about 20 lbs. and trying for a FG of 1.015 or so. What FG did your mead finish at? Do you cold crash or just let it ferment out all the way?

Cheers!
My son told me it went thru a strainer, then cheese cloth then thru some kind of filter, I believe some kind of fine mesh. He is a sous chef at a local resort and they use equipment that I never even heard of.
I have read that if you strain the purée then stick it in a refrigerator the small pieces will float on top, so you can skim them off.
F.G. of 1.015 is very good. I have never cold crashed, just let them go. Unfortunately it takes forever.
__________________
mrdillon5 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-30-2012, 02:52 AM   #5
chronlord
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 38
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrdillon5 View Post
My son told me it went thru a strainer, then cheese cloth then thru some kind of filter, I believe some kind of fine mesh. He is a sous chef at a local resort and they use equipment that I never even heard of.
I have read that if you strain the purée then stick it in a refrigerator the small pieces will float on top, so you can skim them off.
F.G. of 1.015 is very good. I have never cold crashed, just let them go. Unfortunately it takes forever.
Good stuff. Thanks, man. I recently read that adding puree is ok and will precipitate eventually. I'd love to know how your latest batch came out. Keep in touch.
__________________
chronlord is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-30-2012, 09:02 AM   #6
fatbloke
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: UK - South Coast.
Posts: 2,682
Liked 174 Times on 161 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Cheffing isn't winemaking. While commercial kitchens will have the kind of kit we can only dream of. The whole point of the exercise is not to break the seeds/pips, as that can lead to a bitterness being imparted by the ferment.

It does seem that the easiest way to handle fruit that has seeds/pips too small to remove by hand is to just freeze (about a week usually sorts out breaking down the cell walls so the yeast can get to the juice), then thaw.

If you are of a nature to be a little OCD and insist on getting as accurate a gravity reading as possible at all stages of the making process, then just press the thawed out fruit.

As to how much fruit ? Just search the net for recipes that use the fruit you've chosen - a lot of recipes seem to suggest about 3 to 3.5lb of fruit to the gallon, or up to 5lb for more delicately flavoured fruit. That's a good guide to follow for quantity, as for the primary Vs secondary debate, if it's the kind of fruit where the original flavour of the fruit is preferred, then secondary is the way to go, or at least 1/3rd to 1/2 the fruit in primary and then the rest in secondary. Fruit in primary can often taste completely different once fermentation has taken place, not forgetting "cap management" being needed, especially if the fermenter vessel is likely to have issues with head space - fruit in primary batches usually need some room to rise as the fruit cap can hold a fair bit of gaseous CO2 and you don't want it (the fruit pulp/debris) from blowing out the airlock - which is why it's often suggested to start fruit batches in buckets as there's less problems with "mead eruptions"......

Oh yes, aeration. Only needed during the early stages of primary, until your gravity drops down to the 1/3rd sugar break (yes you will need a hydrometer to make the tests, along with either a wine thief or a test jar - and yes I just make sure that I sanitise my test jar and put the samples back into the batch - it's not caused me any problems doing this).

Sanitising puree/pulp/fruit can be done by using a little of the water that you're gonna brew with, then adding a campden tablet (1 crushed tablet per gallon of liquid/pulp/puree/fruit) a couple of days ahead of when you're gonna use it, which allows it to do it's thing as for the sulphites to dissipate.

Obviously I haven't worked with prickly pear, it's hard/almost impossible to obtain it here and most of us don't have enough heated glass space to try and grow some.....

__________________

"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away". Tom Waits.

Oh, and here's some blog stuff!

fatbloke is offline
chronlord Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-30-2012, 02:51 PM   #7
chronlord
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 38
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

Hey, thanks for taking the time to give me some really thorough answers to questions I had.

I'm going to grab some campden tabs today at the LHBS and brew the mead tomorrow.

I actually didn't break any seeds using this food mill. They are very hard to crack and the sieve was the perfect size. Easy peasy.

Per your advice, I'm switching out the 5 gallon carboy for a bucket. I have a 20 gallon fermenting bucket with lid. The increased surface area will expose more of the must to oxygen - and make my 3x/day aerations (1/3 sugar break) more effective.

Cheers!

__________________
chronlord is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-30-2012, 03:49 PM   #8
fatbloke
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: UK - South Coast.
Posts: 2,682
Liked 174 Times on 161 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by chronlord View Post
Hey, thanks for taking the time to give me some really thorough answers to questions I had.

I'm going to grab some campden tabs today at the LHBS and brew the mead tomorrow.

I actually didn't break any seeds using this food mill. They are very hard to crack and the sieve was the perfect size. Easy peasy.

Per your advice, I'm switching out the 5 gallon carboy for a bucket. I have a 20 gallon fermenting bucket with lid. The increased surface area will expose more of the must to oxygen - and make my 3x/day aerations (1/3 sugar break) more effective.

Cheers!
Brilliant. Just remember that when you hit the 1/3rd mark, it's probably best to stir it up/aerate one last time, add any nutrients you need and then move it over to a carboy or similar.

Of course, you could probably get away with the large fermenter until it's finished, as it's protected by the blanket of CO2, but either way you find it the best. Secondary would have to be moved into carboy etc, because with a fruit element to the brew, the increase in possiblity of oxidation with time etc etc....
__________________

"What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away". Tom Waits.

Oh, and here's some blog stuff!

fatbloke is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-03-2012, 01:57 AM   #9
chronlord
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: San Diego, California
Posts: 38
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 12

Default

I just finished my brew day. There's a pictorial here:

http://imgur.com/a/7MPb5

I used 22lbs of honey. Did not heat or boil. Hope I didn't screw up. Time will tell.

fatbloke: Thanks again for your sage advice, ol'chap!

__________________
chronlord is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-03-2012, 03:30 AM   #10
springmom
Texan, by golly. Grandma by the grace of God.
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
springmom's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Spring, Texas
Posts: 182
Liked 13 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 17

Default

SO not fair! Mine have man-(and woman-) eating thorns on them!!!! Thought I was goingto die last year before I got all te thorns out of my hands. Which went THROUGH heavy leather gloves. I may stick to my Texas persimmon. They at least don't bite back.

__________________

Considering: Sparkling raspberry wine, carrot wine

In Primary: Ed's Apfelwein; Raspberry Puree Apple Cider

In Secondary: Pumpkin Pie Mead; Traditional Mead; Dried Elderberry Wine; Blueberry Wine; Texas Persimmon wine; White grape/peach wine; Texas Twang; Hi, Biscus! Metheglyn; A Maize-ing Wine

So far, so good.

springmom is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Prickly Pear Mead YeastieBoys Mead Forum 1 04-15-2012 07:36 AM
Prickly Pear Mead magno Mead Forum 55 03-21-2012 05:14 PM
My Prickly Pear Mead Apollo Mead Forum 25 09-24-2008 04:31 PM
First Prickly Pear Mead RangerG Mead Forum 1 05-22-2008 01:08 AM
Prickly Pear Mead DesertBrew Mead Forum 39 10-03-2007 04:35 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS