Now many people cook mead, but we, following the traditions, went for the most the correct mead in Suzdal. After all, this city can be called the capital of the honey drink.
You can try it here at every step — from sellers in the market, in cafes or restaurants. At the end of the 20th century, a special factory was even built in the city as part of the development of the Golden Ring project. And in September last year, the festival “Medovukha-Fest” was held here for the first time.
Guide to the world of mead became for us a connoisseur and connoisseur of drink Maxim Rybakov, brand chef of Suzdal GK Pushkarskaya Sloboda.
A little bit about the modern history of mead
Before the Olympics-80 in many cities of the USSR, including in Suzdal, they began to build hotel complexes and prepare service personnel to receive foreign guests.
They were trained in service, new recipes were brought and developed.
Thanks to the variety of delicacies, the Soviet people remembered at that time the 1952 Olympics in Helsinki. One of the Finnish organizers was even invited as a consultant to Russia to find out what needs to be done and what products to use to properly impress guests of the Olympics-80.
After discussion, it was decided to work with local, domestic products.
In the wake of the new recipes, a light drink was invented — a modern “fast” mead, which in part was similar to the mead of the 19th century.
Both of these drinks have one beginning — put honey. Remember «And I was there, honey, drinking beer», — this is just about honey.
From its name it even follows that it is a drink of long fermentation: put — left for a long time.
In essence, put honey is a strong mixture of honey, berries and water, which was laid in the ground and was blocked without the use of heat treatment.
The basic components of modern mead
I guess earlier used the most honey old, candied, the one that remained in barrels from last season.
Of course, mead is better obtained from the fresh product, because it is more aromatic and tastier.
It is optimal to make a mix — the old is bigger, the fresh is smaller.
For example, I sometimes cook mead from the old mead, and then add fresh buckwheat honey in the middle of the process to continue the fermentation. In any case, honey should boil.
To have a foam that must be removed.
Well, when used to create a drink of wax particles.
Sourdough is a wild yeast, such as a fermented mixture of rye flour and water, left in a warm place. There is little yeast in such a mixture, but there are different fungi, microorganisms that bring their taste into the drink.
If yeast is used, then only fresh, pressed, because they are alive.
Undoubtedly, water quality is also important.
Ideally, the water should be spring water.
Honey from a private apiary
We need 2-3 g of hops in dry form.
You can buy it at health food stores or at pharmacies. If you’re lucky, and you will work with hops in the cones, it should be taken smaller.
In fact, there is no exact recipe — up to r or ml — you have to experiment.
Plus you need honey, water and pressed yeast.
1. First, prepare a sweet honey solution: 300 g of honey per 1 liter of water.
We start to warm it on low heat. A portion of the warm solution, approximately 200 ml, needs to be poured and cooled to 40 ° C. It is necessary to dilute 10 g of yeast and leave to wander in a warm place, 2 hours. During fermentation, bubbles will start to stand out and a powerful smell will go.
Immediately it becomes clear that the yeast is ready.
2. Simultaneously bring the rest of the mixture to a boil, removing the foam. Remove from heat.
Cool the mixture to 60 ° C.
3. Add hops so that it will brew and give all its useful substances to the drink. Leave the mixture to steam. It should cool to 40 ° C, then add fermented yeast.
Cover the container with a tight lid and leave for 5-7 days warm.
Tip one: cover containers can be wrapped in foil. Complete tightness is not necessary.
Let the excess gases come out under pressure, and the balance necessary for the process of obtaining mead is established.
You have a slow, uniform fermentation.
4. It is necessary to check the mead every day. If there is foam, then the drink is fermenting.
The foam starts to decrease — the yeast has eaten the maximum amount of sugar.
More they do not need, then the mead will become sour. The drink is ready.
It must be drained, poured into glass bottles or into a wooden barrel, tightly closed and put away in a dark, cool place.
In this form of drink and must be stored.
Optimally — 2-3 weeks.
Adding honey can prolong the life of the drink. Shivers work and eat sugar.
More honey added, increased shelf life. To do this, part of the mead should be cast, mix honey with it and pour back to the main mixture.
Increasing the degree, we extend the life of the drink.
Tip two: Mead (hop honey) — is the base. Taste depends on additional ingredients. If it is some kind of spice or spice, it is better to brew them first to reveal the flavor.
If berries, such as lingonberries or raspberries, it makes no sense to brew them, you can add at the end of cooking.
Few, add, let it brew for 7 days.
Some believe that the “correct” mead is always muddy. No, it all depends on the cleaning!
Muddy mead — a sign of crafting, handicraft, home style.
Medovukha, made by hand, of course, you can repeatedly filter / filter — for transparency, but I don’t see the point, since the process of its preparation is rather laborious.
The biggest problem of industrial mead is pasteurization, that is, to stop the fermentation process, everything useful and the most delicious are killed.
The second is sugar. Honey is an expensive product, instead of it they put sugar and aromatic additives.
Some use honey, but there are few such producers. I talked with technologists.
They say that there used to be a lot of honey at work, but now there is almost no.
Honey is added slightly to smell.
Small medovarennye companies allow themselves and honey to use, and to modify the drink in the bottle.
You open it, and the mead «hisses».
Pay attention to the expiration date.
It can not be stored for more than 1 month.
If there is such a shelf life, then the product is more or less real.
This is a sure sign.
There is such a practice when large pieces of meat marinate in alcohol — most often in beer or wine. Mead for this is also good.
Pork / chicken / duck and honey is a great company. First, the meat is getting a little softer.
Secondly, it gets a pleasant slightly spicy flavor.
Mead — chilled — serve well to the same products on the principle of «sweet to salty.»
The drink will be perfectly combined with smoked poultry.
Or, if the meat is cooked with some kind of salty sauce.
By the way, mead can be served and heated. If you add spices, spices, berries to it, you’ll have a bit of it.
Only alcoholic sbiten.
Honey marinated pork
Mead is an excisable commodity, it is spelled out in 171 FZ.
It says: “Medovukha is a low-alcoholic beverage produced on the basis of honey wort with a honey content of at least 8% in raw materials and a strength of up to 6 degrees”.
In Russia, there are two state standards for honey — polyfleral and monoflerny. Monoflerny honey is defined only two — it is linden and buckwheat.
Poliflerny is floral.
And the bee collects it from all over — sunflower, flowers, weeds, acacia, etc.