I threw this fig mead together and it came out quite well, you could easily substitute sugar for the honey.
Here is my recipe PER GALLON:
3.5# fresh frozen figs--thawed
water to 1 gallon
1/2 tsp yeast nutrient
Yeast energizer, if needed
1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
1 campden tablet, initially and then as needed
1 vanilla bean, split
1 Darjeeling black tea bag
5 pieces of candied ginger
2 slices dried lemon 1 slice dried orange
5 grams Epernay II Wine Yeast or D47
Adjust using tartaric acid after ferment is complete, if needed
OG goal 1.085-1.090
Goal Total Acid: .45-6%
Wash figs, remove stems, then freeze overnight until ready to use. Freezing the figs allows in breakdown of the fruit cells, allowing more juice to be produced. Thaw figs prior to use, then chop/smash them. Place them in straining bag and in primary. Cover with the honey and add 1/2 gallon of boiling water. Add the remaining ingredients EXCEPT the yeast. Place lid on primary and after 12 hours fish out the tea bag and discard. Place lid back on primary and allow to rest for 12 more hours. 24 hours after starting remove straining bag and gently press all juice from the bag. Set pulp bag to the side. Add remaining water to 1 gallon level. Check SG and add more honey, if necessary, to reach desired starting point. Add hydrated yeast to the surface of liquid in primary (use yeast energizer if necessary). Put straining bag back in primary, may want to weigh down with marbles so bag remains submerged. Wait 10 or 12 hours before stirring the melomel. Gently squeeze the straining bag at least twice a day, stir the melomel twice daily. On the 5th day or when SG reaches 1.010 or lower (whichever comes first), strain/press and discard the pulp and all "add ins". Transfer the melomel to carboy and attach airlock. Rack every 60 days thereafter until no more sediment drops. Use Campden per process if desired in your mead making. When clear, rack to clean carboy and add Campden and sorbate per package instructions if backsweetening. Allow to rest for 1 week under airlock and then back sweeten with sugar syrup or honey. Allow to rest for 1-2 weeks under airlock after sweetening to ensure fermentation does not resume, check with hydrometer to make sure there is not a drop in S.G., and then rack one final time and allow to bulk age for at least 6 months after bottling.
NOTE: Check TA after ferment is complete and adjust as needed with tartaric acid or acid blend. Also, use yeast nutrient and yeast energizer as necessary to help ensure a healthy ferment.
Additional note: At 12 hour mark, chucked in 1 cup of sweet dates that had been chopped, skin of one banana, 2 ripe bananas…all covered with enough boiling water and allowed to make a “date banana soup”, added to primary when cooled.
This will make a fabulous BASTING alcohol for fruitcake of spice cake, added to brownies, splashed in coffee, or served ice cold.
I found that I also enjoyed this dry, so some of it was bottled dry and some backsweetened. It is a gorgeous golden color and looks like sherry and shows no signs of oxidization even though dates were used.
Motto: quel che sara sara