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Print this Recipe    Mead 04

STRAWBERRY RHUBARB MEAD

1 gallon water
3 lbs. honey
4 cups chopped rhubarb
1 qt. strawberrys
2 packets ale/beer yeast

Meads are not frightening things to make. Actually, they are
deceptivly easy. The only thing to keep in mind is that everything
needs sterilizing. Wash out/off all the utensils, pots, tubing,
spoons, bottles, and containers with a good sanitizer. B-Br te is
a good commercial brand. The second rule of mead is that anything
you wash with your sanitizer needs to be very well rinsed afterwards
with fresh water (no one likes a case of the runs, if you know what
I mean). Keeping in mind these two rules, the rest is easy:

Boil the honey with 1/2 of the water.

As the honey begins to foam, skim the surface with a fine mesh
strainer until no more foam bubbles up. Make sure you get the bulk
of this, but by no means be fanatical about it. You do have other
things to do.

Mash up the strawberrys and the rhubarb chuncks and put them in
the bottom of your plastic brewing bucket. Put the boiled honey in
the bucket along with the other 1/2 gallon of water.

Let this mixture cool, as the hot honey will surely kill the yeast.
When the mix is cool (about 85 degrees or therebouts), add your
yeast. At this point, cover your bucket and put an air lock on
top and put it someplace that wont be disturbed.

When the air lock slows down to bubbling once every 30 seconds or
so, your mead is just about done. This part of the brewing process
takes anywhere from three weeks to two months depending on your
climatic conditions. You can, when you think it might be done,
remove the airlock sanitize and rinse off a straw, and put the
straw through the airlock hole for a taste to see if it's done.
You will want to bottle it when the honey sweetness is all gone.

When it comes time to bottle this, sanitize a bunch of plastic soda
bottles. This will make about a gallon of mead so clean as many
bottles and caps as necessary. Sanitize and rinse a piece of pvc
tubing (the hose kind that you can get at your local hardware
store). Invite your favorite person over to help you fill the
bottles. You want to get as much of the mead out as possible without
getting any of the pulp mixed in. Strain the mead through a big
strainer or collander (that has been sanitized and rinsed) and into
another bucket or pot. Take the pvc tubing and create a vacuum type
affair (you remember from sixth grade science putting the bucket
on the table and all of your bottles on the floor and syphon your
mead into bottles. This really does work best with another person
to help, but it can be done with one.

Put your freshly bottled mead in the refrigerator for about a week
(if you can stand to wait that long). The result is more than worth
the effort put in. You cannot buy anything that compares to this
on the market. Really.

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