There’s no shortage of delicious food we can make with a good jar of honey. So when you have extra honey to spare, put it to good use and make the drink of gods—mead.
Mead, possibly the oldest alcoholic beverage on earth, is made by fermenting honey and water. The ingredients are quite basic though the process takes time. Well worth the wait, if you ask me. After all, there must be good reason why this divine elixir has been intoxicating human civilisation for centuries.
Here’s a simple mead recipe from Kitchen Warehouse marketing director Justine Murphy. Justine enjoys entertaining and one of the things she loves to do is welcome guests with a drink to make them feel relaxed and in the mood for fun. Justine loves serving mead because it’s unique and easy to make ahead in substantial amounts. Justine’s mead recipe is flavoured with oranges and spices, but feel free to experiment with your own flavour combinations.
So bring out your honey jars and get the fermenter ready because guess what, you don’t even have to be a viking to make and enjoy mead! And if you are also interested to learn more about honey production and its benefits, do check out the schedules and join our What’s the Buzz: Backyard Beekeeping workshop.
- 5L Fermenter jar
- Airlock and stopper
- Measuring spoons
- Measuring jug
- Chopping board
- Chef’s knife
- Rasp grater (if using fresh whole nutmeg)
- Wine bottles
- 1.6kg honey
- 4.5L water (500ml of warm water + 4L of lukewarm water)
- 1 orange, unpeeled, thoroughly washed and roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp raisins
- 1 cinnamon quill
- Pinch of nutmeg (optional)
- Pinch of allspice (optional)
- ½ tsp yeast
- ½ tsp yeast nutrient
- Have all your equipment cleaned and sterilised first before starting. This is an important step to successfully ferment your honey.
- Put the raisins, cinnamon, oranges, and the optional spices into your sterilised fermenter.
- To make the honey easier to pour, dissolve it in 500ml of warm water. Fit a funnel onto the mouth of your fermenter then carefully transfer your honey mixture into the jar.
- Top your fermenter with the remaining 4L of water. Make sure to leave some space at the top of your fermenter so the foam created once the yeast starts to work will have enough room.
- Add the yeast and yeast nutrient into the jar. This will be your main ingredients to let the yeast feed on the sugars in your mixture, start fermentation, and convert your honey into alcohol. The yeast nutrient also helps prevent your mixture from going bad.
- Cover your fermenter securely with the stopper then give your fermenter a few flips to ensure your yeast is evenly mixed throughout.
- Place the airlock in then store your mead jar in a cool, shaded area. Foam should form on the top after 12 hours. Let your mead continue to ferment for one to two months.
- Once foaming has stopped, transfer your mead into a sanitised wine bottle using a hose. This will let the slurry separate and give you a clear mead to enjoy.