Tag Archives: recipe

A Rice Beer Recipe

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[An updated recipe is located here – it is much simpler!]

I just finished making the simplest booze to make ever & it is chock full of good bacteria. Rice beer has 3 ingredients: rice, yeast & water. The yeast is specific though; it is Shanghai Dried Yeast Balls (Jiuqu). The other yeasts you will find at your local Asian market might be wheat based & might contain a lot of the Candida strain & you don’t want that if you are already having problems with Candida.

I used Ben the Urban Farmer’s recipe, which calls for “a few weeks”, but a lot of the other recipes say it is finished in 4 days. Also, while looking around for recipes, I learned that there is a huge renaissance in Asia with the traditional Korean Makgeolli (rice beer, but it uses Nuruk yeast, which is wheat based). The rice beer made with Jiuqu is called Lao Zao or Lao Zhao; it is described as a sweet beer, but the recipe I used wasn’t all that sweet – maybe the few weeks fermentation broke down most of the sugars.

Here’s what I did:

Rinse 5 cups of rice until clear & soak for an hour. Rinse again & steam in a bamboo steamer over a large pot of water for 2 hours. I line the steamer with a thin tea towel (floursack cloth) soaked in hot water & wrung out. When finished, put in large container or crock. I ferment everything in my large crockpot crock.

Crush one yeast ball until fine & mix well into cooled but still warm rice. Make a depression in the middle & cover with a tea towel (or paper towel) for two days, stirring each day. You can add water if liquid isn’t forming in center hole, but don’t add much. Cover & let ferment for another couple of days (or weeks in my case).

When done to taste, spoon some into some cheesecloth or floursack cloth & squeeze the liquid into a mason jar & guzzle. Will make about a quart. It is ready to drink as soon as bottled & you will want to drink it soon while it is fresh. Sometimes sugar is added right before bottling to make it fizzier & more alcoholic, but I’m going for purity.

If you like, you can make Drunken Chicken or other recipes with your beer. The rice is just as yummy as the beer if you like a nice boozy rice pudding.

The most interesting thing about Ben’s post was:

The chinese yeast balls above contain koji (or at least some similar mould that produces these enzymes) as well as yeast, so adding these to cooked rice allows:

The koji to break the starches down into sugars; and
The yeast to simultaneously ferment these sugars into alcohol.

[…] So the fact that these yeast balls contain koji and yeast theoretically means that we could ferment anything with starch in it. Rice, barley, wheat, corn, potato, sweet potato, squash, beetroot, peas, pumpkin, banana flowers – pretty much any plant you can think of.

His website is really great if you are fascinated with fermentation like I am – next I’m going to try his recipe for Kombucha & maybe try to make my own apple cider vinegar, hopefully by first making my own hard cider.

[Note: I made soooo many mistakes on the second go-round. You need to use glutinous rice (does not contain gluten) or sweet rice as it is called by the guy at the Asian market. I used normal rice & it worked but it tastes “green” – I bottled it with 1t.  sugar & I will report back in a couple of days on the taste now.

I was trying it too dry, so adding a 1/4 cup water each day really helped & the process did take 2 weeks – maybe with the sweet rice it will only take 4 days – I’ll let you know. The end product before squeezing the beer out will resemble a thick, soupy oatmeal. It actually produces a lot of its own liquid. The squeezing process (through flour sack cloth in my case) is not unlike milking a cow: kind of gross yet satisfying. Not sure what to do with the rice left over by the process.]

[UPDATE: I played with the recipe some more & think I have it down pat, so I posted it in A Better Rice Beer Recipe.]

Adventures in the Kitchen

T_bone_Steak_Egg

I’ve become really good at pan frying T-bones in coconut oil. The first one I did was a major fail because I followed instructions & cooked the crap out of it. The T-bones I am able to get are just shy of an inch thick & I’ve finally perfected the cooking process.

We always split them & I like more rare & my husband likes medium to a little more well-done, so we compromise. Let the steak come to room temperature & slather with melted coconut oil. Sprinkle one side liberally with salt & pepper & put that side down in a hot, dry skillet.

I use cast iron & heat on medium heat until you toss water into the pan & it sizzles for a second before evaporating. Let the steak sizzle for 4 minutes without touching it. Then you might have to scrape it off with your spatula, salt & pepper the other side & turn & cook for another 4 minutes. Only do 3 minutes per side if you like it less done. Then I deglaze the pan with some butter, scrape up all the browned bits & fry up a mess of eggs.

Last week I started a batch of rice wine, and now I’m afraid to try it. It’s fermenting & smells alcoholic, but I did have to scoop some fuzzy mold-looking stuff off the top. Lol, do you think it will harm me? I followed some instructions that said to boil rice & water, cover & ignore for 7-10 days. I’ll don my big girl panties & try it (in a day or two). I’m going to try making it again, but this time I’m going to use Ben The Urban Farmer’s recipe.

I have also been experimenting with trying to make yogurt with raw milk. I made one batch & it got kind of funky really fast. I don’t think the naturally occuring bacteria in the raw milk liked the added bacteria from the culture much. So, off I went to the store for some new yogurt to use as starter.

I decided that I was going to go ahead & pasturize (heat) the raw milk to make yogurt. Here’s my thinking on that: I drink the raw milk & put the raw cream in my coffee, so I’m getting plenty of that bacteria in my system. I want yogurt to use as sour cream & etc, but I’m not willing to go to extreme lengths to do so. Also, the yogurt will have its own cultures, so I am getting that benefit.

The raw milk is made grassfed without antibiotics or additives & isn’t UHT like store-bought, so even though I’m destroying most of the bacteria, at least I’M doing it & not some nameless, faceless corporation that really, really wants to put aspertame in it but not in the list of ingredients. Anyway I made some yogurt last night & it looked fine this morning.

Resistant Starch (contd) + Yogurt Recipe

bowl-of-greek-yogurt

It’s weird how I can be hungry and full at the same time. I’m trying to get a little resistant starch with every meal, but because of the RS, I’m not really eating many meals. I am farting like a crazy person though & I may never quit pooping.

I read that the farts are from the RS being fermented in my large intestine, so I decided that tomorrow I will bring a baked & cooled potato to work and eat it with some homemade yogurt to get some probiotic with my prebiotic. Bacteria Ahoy!

Making Greek yogurt is laughingly easy. I start this in the evening. First you start out with a half-gallon fresh whole milk & a cup of heavy cream (just because) and heat to 180F. You will know when it is close because it will get nice & frothy – do not boil!

When it gets up to temp, fill a mug with it, add a small amount of cocoa & a tiny amount of sugar, cinnamon & nutmeg & stir well. Give to your husband because he really likes hot chocolate. Pour the rest of the hot milk into the crock from your crockpot (or, you know, any container, I guess) and let cool to 115F.

Add a starter yogurt – the last 3 tablespoons of your last batch & stir well. Cover with lid & put in a cooler and wrap towels around it. The trick is to let it cool as slowly as possible so it’s nice & warm for the culture to multiply. Go to bed.

Get up in the morning & pour the yogurt into a colander that is lined with a tea towel & set in a lasagna pan (for drainage). Make sure the tea towel is not hanging out of the pan or it will leak all over the place! Put in fridge to drain. Go to work.

Come home from work and spoon your yummy yogurt into a couple of mason jars. Chow massively!