How to make easy Mead recipe
Hits 64781 | Created 2009-07-07 | Modified 2011-09-22I thought I'd try my hand at mead. This recipe is a mix of a few I found on the net. It is pretty easy and requires little special ingredients or equipment.
4 x jars of 340g honey (light)
1 x stick cinnamon
1/2 x teaspoon ground allspice
30 x cloves (approx)
1 x medium sized orange
1 or 2 x teabags
Campden tablets (for sterilising equipment)
Wine yeast (or brewers or champagne yeast)
Large 1 gallon capacity pan
Demijohn (big glass jar)
Airlock for the demijohn
Boil up 4 pints of water in the pan. When boiling add 4.5 pints of cold water and continue to heat as you...
Add the honey and stir until dissolved.
Heat until steaming hot (don't boil it). Some frothy scum will rise to the surface, skim it off with a spoon.
Grate the orange zest off the orange and add. Then chop off all the outside leaving only orange pulp. Mash this and add it to the pan.
Now add all the other spices.
Make a strong cup of black tea. If you're using European or American teabags you might need two in the cup. Anyway, it should be strong and black, add it to the pan.
Now continue to heat (without boiling, it should be steaming hot), for between 30 mins and 5 hours (depends on the recipe) I heated for 1 hour.
Whilst this is going on, clean your demijohn, tube and airlock with campden tablets - dissolve about 5 in a couple of pints of hot water and wash everything with it. Then rinse with fresh cold water. This is important :)
After your hour(s) you must then leave it to cool. This takes at least an hour, if not more - too hot and you'll kill the yeast. I racked the liquid into the demijohn after 30 mins then stood the demijohn in cold water for another 40 or so. It should be warm, not hot, not cold.
Ok, now we're ready to strain it into the demijohn.
Put the demijohn below the pan, I used a tea strainer in the pan to stop the spices and bits shooting up the tube during this process, or you could strain it first into a sterilised plastic bucket, another pan, etc.
Place one end into the pan, then suck on the other end until the liquid comes through, putting it quickly into the demijohn. Gravity will then take over and drain from one to the other.
Assuming your mead mix isn't too hot, now sprinkle a heaped teaspoon of yeast into the demijohn and apply the airlock with water in it.
Leave in a warmplace until fermentation has ceased (no more bubbles go through the airlock), then use the same racking method with the tube to transfer the mead into sterilised wine bottles. Cork them and store in a cool, dark place for a month before drinking.
Mead lasts for up to a year, but not really longer.
I'll update this article when I rack my bottles, after all, it's my first time too!
Note, this seems to make a dry mead! Not sure if this is down to the honey, or the yeast, but there appear to be two suggestions for sweeter mead: Add more honey at the start, and reduce water slightly, or if already finished, add honey to the mead before bottling. Please let me know if you try either, I'll make a new batch and update again.