Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Homemade Hooch

        So today for tradition of breaking back into things I am going to show you and teach you how to make a gallon of "hard gatorade" which you will not be adding alcohol to, but you will be converting the sugars and gatorade itself INTO alcohol which can yield anywhere from 15%-20% AKA 30Proof to 40Proof. 

The first step is not crucial as you can use simple tap water if you like. I will be using this gallon jug so you can see ratio I use and adjust accordingly as you like for whatever other product. 


DO NOT USE anything which has Sodium Benzoate or Potassium Sorbate in it. This is what is known as a dry preservative and it will kill off your yeast and not allow it to ferment at all, meaning you just wasted time and money.

As you can see I'm just using a gallon of spring water though, my personal reasoning behind this is because like with anything if you start with a good base, you will have a better resulting product in the end.

Ok heres how you can determine ANYTHING that can possibly be used to make it a "Hard" version of literally almost anything.

First check your ingredients.

Now you see on this there are no preservatives so thats half the battle. Now the other trick is you need to make sure you have enough sugars per serving in this. Typically you want MINIMUM of 20g/serving of sugars in this. Our gatorade here only has 7g/serving so that isnt enough, we will have to adjust that in a few minutes and I will show you how.

Now on the can it says to use about 1/2cup of powdered mix into it per gallon. Also notice that in my water jug I did not fill it all the way to the top. I am using about 3/4 a cup of powdered mix here so the flavor can intensify in concentration and also linger after it started becoming alcohol and a bit more bitter.

OK now the next trick is you need to have your water at least "luke warm" you can either do this by running the bottle under a warm tap for a few minutes or just leaving it out of the fridge for a while. The reason this step is important is because of a few things

A) You want the sugars to be able to melt down (I know I havent gotten there yet) and 
B) Yeast loves a temperature between 67 & 78 degrees Fahrenheit in which it will yield the most life and activity. 

Ok so now personally myself I try and make sure that my yeast has a banquet of sugar. So I am going to be adding about 2 cups of sugar to the gatorade mix as to push the serving amount of 7g/serving well over the 20g/serving to help the alcohol produce along the way.

(I poured about 1 & 3/4 cup sugar in. It's not an exact science, but the extra 1/4 wouldnt hurt it.

Now if you were to uncap this mixture and take a swig it would be like drinking a diabetics nightmare. It wont hurt you or anything but it has a fuckload of sugar in it. Take the next few minutes to submerge the gallon jug into some warm water or run hot water over it, just to help speed up the process of the sugar melting and combining with our mixture. You can see now why I left room at the top of the jar becfause adding in the powder mix and sugar makes the level rise and we are going to want some space for air and carbon dioxide in our container when the time comes. Trust me.

Now this next step isn't crucial, but it IS the difference between having an OK product and having an AMAZING product. First off, we all have seen this yeast, it is OK at best, if you REALLY are going to use this stuff, try and find HIGHLY ACTIVE yeast of this brand as it WILL WORK, but the normal stuff will take weeks in comparison to days and it will not taste as good.

This is the good shit you should be using. It's expensive, but WELL WORTH THE INVESTMENT. You can ebay this shit even. I paid 18 bucks for 2 large packets of this stuff and I've already made over 6 gallons in the past month and have a shit ton of this stuff left.

Double Protip. Buy a pound of no-rinse sanitizer. Much better results. Much less chemical taste chance lingering in your product. OR if you buy gallons of spring or distilled water, those things are already sterile so you dont even need to worry about sanitizing, just get a new jug next time and you are golden.

Now ladies and gentlemen, we come to the true science part of our project. Typicially I like to use between 7 and 10 grams of yeast per gallon. This is a typical rule of thumb and if you stick to this, you will almost always yield a positive result.

Personally myself I like to make a "starter" because it just basically "kickstarts" the whole fermentation process for you. What I do, take a shotglass and put some warm water in it, some of your spring water or distilled if saved, and dump your serving of yeast into the glass, and wait a few minutes. Ideally if you were to make a full starter you put it into a 12/16oz bottle and let it go for an hour, then you can put it in the fridge overnight and take it out an hour before use to let it achieve room temperature again. This is just ensuring that your yeast is alive and kicking. You DO NOT HAVE TO do this step. I just like to in order to be thorough.

This is my starter only a few minutes later and it ALREADY is kicking. This is thanks to that amazing yeast I ended up investing in. Like I said, its WORTH IT.

Ok last few steps my friends. All you need now is to pitch the yeast into the mixture. Up-end it/ shake gently for a few moments and then place it in its appropriate resting place where you can leave it undisturbed for a while. Typically a few days to a few weeks depending on strength you want and type of yeast you have used. Invest in an AIRLOCK. JUST DO IT! If you don't have an airlock you CAN use a condom but I REALLY DON"T RECOMMEND THIS. Those chemicals and flavors. I know personally I don't want that in my drink, but in a pinch you can add it to the top and poke a pin hole in it so CO2 may escape and oxygen doesn't get into your mix.

Once you have added the airlock all you have to do is keep an eye on it making sure that nothign overflows (which it wont if you left the appropriate space when we started) The yeast I added in produces about 14% in 2 days and 20% in 5 days. That means by the time the superbowl comes around everyone can be fucked up on hard tea and gatorade. It cost me in total for supplies used per project under 5 dollars a gallon.

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