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Peeled bananas 4lbs 2kilos
Banana skins ½ lb ¼ kilo
Grape concentrate 100mls
Sugar 3lbs 1.5kilos
Water 1 gallon 4.5 ltrs
Yeast and nutrient As directed on the packet
Amlozyme As shown on the packet
A joy! Surprisingly nice sort of a pudding wine, not dissimilar to a Madeira, and perfectly good enough to be served to guests.
Start by buying the bananas, as black and “going over” as you can find. I get mine from my ethnic local greengrocer because they sell bananas far riper than ordinary shops. As with all serious cooking it pays to cultivate good suppliers. He also knows my strange tastes and can hold some back for me and let me know when they are available.
Next you might want to put the immersion on as the whole process is quite sticky.
Place all the bananas in a large cloth bag and then lower the bag all tied up into the saucepan with the water. Remember that boiled banana goo gets right into the fibres between cloth so only use something that is past it, or reserved for these sorts of jobs. Bring to the boil and simmer away for half an hour or so. The bananas should be reduced to a hopeless mush in the bag.
Pour the hot water into a fermentation bucket over the sugar and the fruit. Then wait for the bag of goo to cool and squeeze hard to extract as much banana flavoured liquor as possible. Add this fluid to the bucket. The remaining squeezed out mess is good compost.
When all the fluid in the bucket is down to 21 degrees centigrade, add the Amylozyme and then after a further 24 hours the yeast. This enzyme is to stop you making jam rather than wine! Cover with a lid or a cloth and leave for in a warm place for a week (or until you start to get complaints). The mess should now be a soapy sludge.
Next, pour it all into the demijohn using the funnel. Normally one would stopper immediately with a rubber bung and airlock, but experience has taught me that banana wine is extremely vigorous in its early stages and would more than likely build up so much pressure as to blow the bung out and make a terrible mess. So what I do is stopper the neck with a hank of cotton wool which will allow the CO2 to escape, but keep out the vinegar fly. After a couple of days, when it calms down, stopper with the bung and trap as normal and leave for a month or so.
You will now see that the demijohn has dropped its load and a thick banana sludge has formed at the bottom of the vessel. Time to “rack off” which means to “decant by siphoning using a plastic tube” the thinner liquor above the sludge and yeast waste, into a fresh clean demijohn. Now top up the new demijohn with the grape concentrate. Fit a fresh airlock and leave for a further four months. By now it should have cleared further. Bottle and leave alone for another six months.
Copyright David Macadam 2013
Thank you David!
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