Learn how to ferment and distill your own rice wine at home
Worldwide population has proven proficient in borrowing and adapting ingredients to make innovative recipes. Cultures have sprung up and intertwined in this way and some elements have become highly versatile. This results in a wide variety of recipes.
In a ranking of the world’s most versatile ingredients, rice can easily make it to the top three. Originally from Asia, rice growth has spread and now many countries have plantations of their own. Even if they don’t, rice is one of the most imported and exported ingredients. So, from a gastronomical and financial point of view, rice is about as good as it gets.
In Mexico, rice is part of their every day diet in the form of red rice. Italy has mixed it together with Mediterranean elements to cook fresh and healthy recipes. Thailand uses the most extravagant cooking devices to steam it into soft and creamy desserts. And there are even recipes of rice-based beverages that go great with a nice summer meal.
A (not so new) rice-based drink
What may be new, and let’s hope it becomes trendy, is the use of rice for alcoholic beverages. This use of rice is actually not new and it’s presumably from China, although most Asian countries have a recipe of their own. This wine is not made from fermented fruit, but from fermented rice and the alcoholic component is not so high, compared to other drinks. Besides, the technique used for making it is similar to that of brewing and, once finished, it can be mixed with fruit juice to make it sweeter which makes an already versatile ingredient into an even more versatile recipe.
It’s highly used in cooking, but some versions, like Sake, are part of a drinking tradition. Like many other recipes, Asians take rice wine as a celebratory drink, even a welcoming one, making it an important cultural element.
What rice to use
In this case, the rice used for making rice wine needs not to be any particular kind of rice. Actually, it’s the experts’ suggestion to use plain white rice which you can find at https://carolinarice.com/products/white-rice/. Here you’ll find an easy to make recipe you can try out at home!
- 150 grams of white rice.
- 150 grams of black raisins with seeds.
- 500 grams of sugar.
- 10 grams of instant yeast.
- 1 liter of water.
- With the help of a strainer, rinse the rice thoroughly, until the water comes off clear. Also rinse the black raisins. Set the raisins aside.
- Pour the rinsed rice in a medium-size pot and pour two cups of water if you are going to cook it. You can also steam it, in which case four cups of water will be needed.
- Once the rice is fully cooked, place it in a bowl and set aside until it is cooled down.
- Once done, add the raisins and the sugar. Add a liter of water.
- Take some instant yeast and, if it is compact, smash it down and sprinkle it all over the rice mix. Give everything a stir so that it blends in.
- At this point, you’ll need some paint strainer which you are going to place all over a deep bowl or container.
- Once placed, pour the rice mix into the container with the strainer and sprinkle some more yeast.
- Cover the container with a lid that fully locks the content in and let it sit for at least twenty days. Open and mix everything once a day.
- During this process, the wine is going to drain through the strainer and the rice will float on top.
- After three or four weeks, use a paint strainer to filter the rice into a clean bowl which, in turn, you’re going to transfer into a clean jar.
- Cover the jar and store it in the refrigerator for an extra week. During this period, the liquid is going to change colours.
- After that period, pour it in a clean bottle and serve whenever you want!
You can give an extra flavour to your wine by using fruits. You can use blueberries, apples or whichever fruit you choose. Squeeze the juice out of them and add it to the wine when it’s ready.