I Still Know What You Made This Summer: Dandelion Wine Part 2

6 Jul

Ann-ie. Back again. Check  it to wreck it. Let’s begin.

When we last left our tub of hissing raisins and yeast it was just one more smelly bucket sittin’ on a table. But this was The Little Bucket That Could. Ferment, that is. And ferment it did. Leaving me and my beau with some engorged raisins, some muck, and, hopefully, some booze.

Here’s what we did in the second stage of Wine’n, not to be confused with regular Whinin’, which is what we did after we read that we couldn’t drink it for six months.

Step 5. Strain it. Boil It. Bottle it. Balloon it. Bop it.

“Dandelion wine. The words were summer on the tongue. The wine was summer caught and stoppered.”

Sounds like more than one step but it went fast. We took that big Bucket O’ Muck and strained the disgusting raisins out. I thought they looked like peanuts they were so swollen.

Gross. Then, to the boiler! One more time. We heated the liquid over the stove until it boiled. After that, we dug through our cheesecloth stash and strained the rest of the muckety muck. The recipe said to strain everything at once  but I just didn’t know if our cloth could take all the water-weight those raisins put on this summer, so we had already gotten rid of those fatties by the time the cheesecloth came out.

In the end, the cloth pretty much looked like a napkin you’d find wadded up and shoved under the table after a wedding reception. And by that I mean, puked upon.

But oo-ee, with all the pond scum strained out, our concoction looked like cool liquid caramel or apple cider.

Next, we poured (carefully! carefully!) the wine-to-be into sterilized bottles. We boiled them but, in the future, I might end up springing for the sterilizer solution stuff…or tongs.

The final frontier: balloons. It’s party time. When you snap those suckers on top of the bottle, they slowly fill up with air.

We let the air out, they filled back up. And so on. Until…

Step 6. Cork it. Store in a cool and dark place for 6 months.

“I got a statistic for you right now. Grab your pencil, Doug. There are five billion trees in the world. I looked it up. Under every tree is a shadow, right? So, then, what makes night? I’ll tell you: shadows crawling out from under five billion trees! Think of it. Shadows running around in the air, muddying the waters you might say.”

(I realize that quote has nothing to do with wine, but isn’t it pretty? As my Grandpa Funke used to say “How about that!”)

So after the balloons were perma-deflated, we removed them and the BF corked the bottles with, ahem, corks and a corker we borrowed from a friend. Now they sit in a cool dark corner of our storage room, exiled from our mouths for six whole months! Actually, since I’ve procrastinated writing this post, it’s more like five months. If I was counting the days til I could wet my whistle with that sweet summer feelin’, I would say it’s going to be ready late November, right around Thanksgiving. And a certain someone just happens to be hosting her own Thanksgiving dinner this year. So a certain someone’s family just might want to start being extra sweet if they want to get a glass of…

WHOOMP! Chaka laka. Chaka laka. Chaka laka…..dandelion wine.

Check out my future Thanksgiving post to see if I gave myself botulism.


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