hist-brewing: Banana Wine

Barclay, Peter C. MAJ barclayp at eucom.mil
Tue Feb 8 09:09:10 PST 2000

Greetings from Terafan,

	Wilthain asked for the banana wine recipe, so...

I started with a MODERN *1-gallon* recipe:

************* ORIGINAL RECIPE *************
3 lb fresh bananas
1.5 cup chopped light (white) raisins
7 pints water
2.25 lb sugar
3 tsp Acid Blend
1/4 tsp Tannin
1 tsp nutrient
1 pkg wine yeast

Slice the bananas and skins, put into nylon straining bag and tie.  Put into
1.5 qts water and bring to a boil, then simmer for 1/2 hour.  Remove pulp,
pour hot liquor over sugar in primary fermentor, and mix thoroughly.  Stir
in remainder of water (cold) and all other ingredients.  Add yeast when cool
enough (85 deg or lower).   Cover primary.  Stir daily, check SG   When
ferment reaches SG 1.040 (3-5 days) strain out and siphon wine off of
sediment into glass secondary.  Attach airlock.  When ferment is complete
(SG has reached 1.000 -- about 3 weeks) siphon off sediment into clean
secondary.  Reattach airlock. Siphon again in 2 months and again if
necessary until clear before bottling.

*********** END OF ORIGINAL RECIPE ************

All of that said, I was making 5 gallons and just cut up the bananas and
threw them into the boil.  After I boiled them 30-45 minutes, I had this
gray "wall paper paste-looking" goop.  We sewed some cheesecloth into a
'bag' and did our best to strain the pulp out of the liquid.  What a horrid
mess!!  It kept squirting out holes in the cheesecloth bag as we squeezed it
trying to get every drop.  

I was not using a hydrometer at that time, so I can't tell you any of the
Specific Gravity info.  I racked it religiously, and after about 6 months,
when I racked it, it was HORRIBLY DRY!  Being a fan of sweet stuff, I added
5 cups of sugar (1 cup per gallon).  It WENT CRAZY!!  It looked like it was
boiling in the carboy!   I waited a month, racked it, and added more sugar.
Again, GONE CRAZY!!  This continued for 3 or 4 months, and then when it
didn't go nuts when I added sugar, and it no longer tasted dry, I bottled

I entered it in that A&S competition at about 18 months total age, and it
was AWESOME.  What a shame those clueless judges didn't taste it.    People
loved it and wanted more.   I had to guard my supply, passing out bottles
carefully on special occasions.  



Master Terafan Greydragon           barclayp at eucom.mil
Brewer and probably other things I can't think of...
Seneschal, Incipient Shire of Blauwasser

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