Dandelion Wine The Real Way | Hooch and Brew Supply

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[ Dandelions are a natural diuretic and have other qualities that may need to be addressed if you are taking medications. Consult your doctor if you are on any medications ]

Greatest Dandelion Wine

When making dandelion wine you have to do some tedious work. When all is said and done you want that work to pay off. Wat you want at the end is the greatest dandelion wine available. How you achieve this is by doing it right and that means going back to what works.

People post all kinds of recipes for making wine and they all seem to have one thing in common. Lots of fruit and sugar. Oh and let us not forget the lack of instructions on how to make that wine taste good. I am going to show you exactly how to make them dandelions produce some fine drinking stuff.

What Does it Taste Like

I have never drank anyone’s wine that tasted good at least if it is not packed full of oranges and other things that do not say “dandelion” on them. Most wine tastes like crap. It has a flavor that just can not be described by me any way. The way it is made to taste good is to turn it into a citrus wine. Well when I want dandelion wine I do not want citrus.

If you do this right , which is no harder than doing it wrong, it will be good. You do not need a lot of oranges, lemons, raisins etc… What you do need is to clean them blossoms up the proper way and do not be lazy about it.

 

What Part of the Plant to Use

You want to use the yellow blossom. No green stuff. The blossom needs to be

fully open so it is nice and sweet and much easier to clean. Do not wait until it turns to seed i.e. fluffy white snow flake looking thing.
Do not use any of the green part as it is very bitter. At least the stem is. the small green leaves that surround the blossom are not bitter or have much flavor but they will impart a bad flavor if you leave them in as this is going to soak in boiling water.

Give Dandelions a Taste !

Just for a good reference on flavor you should eat some if you never have. they are very good for you and taste great. Sweet tasting. That is why the bees go for them. Also lizards and a billion lizards can’t be wrong. Pick some and clean them and run some water over them to wash off any thing you do not want to be eating. toss about 3 or 4 in your yap and you will surely enjoy them.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said “What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.”

You can also eat them on salads , on pizza crust , make tincture, roast the roots, eat roots like carrots. The list goes on. For a real good article and recipes to try take a look at The Prairie Homestead . They have a great site full of good things.

 

Picking the Blossoms

So first off you got to go picking. If you plan on making a lot of wine then you are going to be crawling around on your hands and knees for a while. I only make a half gallon or so these days. Too old for all that stuff.
Like I said pick the ones that are fully open. Make sure if you are picking on someones property other than your own that there have been no pesticides put down lately.

I would suggest that you do not pick more than about 1/2 quart at a time. The reason for this is that they start closing up fast after picking and that makes for some tedious cleaning. Pick a little clean a little.

So just grab them under the blossom and pull. They will break off. Does not matter if you get the stem or not. I usually pinch off any long stems that I get as I go along so I do not have to do it while I am cleaning the blossoms.

Put them in a strainer, bowl or a jar. Sit down in a shady spot and get ready for the cleaning.

Cleaning Dandelion Blossoms

Rule Number 1 – Do not wash them before you clean them. This will cause you problems. Wet dandelions are not easy to clean. The petals will stick all over your hands.

Watch this video I made. It will show you how to easily clean the green stuff away. You can also pinch off the blossom and then clean away the green petals but it takes forever. Don’t mind my dirty fingernails as it is dandelion stuff. Your fingers are going to be dark green/black after picking and cleaning. Comes off but you gotta scrape it out from under your nails.


Rolling the blossom between the thumb and index finger is fast and easy. Most of the time it will remove the green all in one motion. Sometimes it will crush too much and you have some of it left attached to the blossom and you just pick it off.

 

Jar of blossoms soaking in water.

 

The Add Ins

You can add in some orange , lemon and rind. Not too much. Or none at all I recon. Anyway the old method that has been used for as long as people have been making it as far as I know is to put the rind and juice from 6 oranges and 5 lemons and 12 Lb sugar in 1 1/4 gallons of wine.

Well I personally say that is way too much citrus. What i do is this :

1 quart blossoms

1 Lb sugar – This will net you a high alcohol content. Not so great in my opinion as it has a strong alcohol taste. This is why they cover it up with citrus. If you do not mind that and just like getting drunk , go for it. It is not bad even without all the citrus added in.

1/2 Lb sugar –  This will give you more dandelion taste. Dandelions have very little flavor and too much alcohol covers it up. I would go this route if you want tasty wine.

1 lemon – Just use a little bit of the rind , grated

1 orange – just use a little bit of grated rind and a squeeze of juice.

{ You can leave out lemon and orange if you want real dandelion wine}

1 Tbs whiskey yeast or sometimes champagne yeast

Instructions:

Put dandelions in large jar or crock pot .

Pour 1 1/2 quarts boiling water over the dandelions

Let sit 3 days in a dark warm place

Strain through a nylon paint strainer bag.

Add in the juice of  orange

Add in a little of the rind from each

Heat to boiling and add in sugar. Keep stirring so sugar does not burn.

Let cool

Add in yeast at the proper temperature for yeast being used. About 90 – 104. Leave lid loose if using a jar so it don’t blow up.

Let sit for a week or so and then put in fridge to drop out yeast.

Pour into a bottle and seal up for a month or longer. Keep min mind if you do not stop the yeast from eating you might have bottle bombs  if sugars are still in the wine. Use Potassium Sorbate if needed.

I let mine sit in a jar with lid cracked until ready to drink. I do not like sweet stuff and any way dandelion wine should not be real sweet.

Enjoy.

Fun with Seeded dandelion

 

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